Cannabis reform advocates in South Dakota are fighting a battle that could ultimately determine the state’s ballot initiative process. On Nov. 3, 2021, South Dakotans voted to pass Amendment A and Measure 26, legislation that would have legalized the recreational and medical use of cannabis respectively, making South Dakota the first state to pass both medical and recreational cannabis measures at the same time. Long before cannabis sales could start, however, a state circuit judge declared the amendment legalizing recreational cannabis unconstitutional in January and voided it.
With the state Supreme Court now considering whether or not the voter-passed initiative was unconstitutional, recreational cannabis advocates say the future of South Dakota’s voter initiative process is at risk. In their opening arguments to the Supreme Court, lawyers Brendan Johnson and Timothy Billion said the case is not just about cannabis but also about the future of the state’s ballot initiative process. They are currently representing several marijuana advocates in the state, including South Dakotans for…
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