EXPLAINER: Why Kansans can’t put marijuana on the ballotPosted by On


TOPEKA (KSNT) – The push to legalize weed is still alive in Kansas. However, it could take awhile to get some Republicans on board. 

State lawmakers put a hold on medical marijuana last year, and it could stay that way. Meanwhile, over in Missouri, it was put up for a vote in 2022 and business has been booming ever since.

“There are drive-thru marijuana dispensaries on the east side of state line road in Kansas City… state and local governments in Missouri are getting revenue from the sale of marijuana,” said Michael Smith, a political science professor and author from Emporia.

Smith, along with Topeka Political Analyst Bob Beatty, joined the weekly capital city political show “Inside Kansas Politics” last Sunday to discuss hot topics at the Kansas Statehouse. While, marijuana legalization efforts fall flat almost every year, advocates are still hoping for a change. 

“If this ever does get traction in Kansas, it may be because it becomes a revenue issue…,” Smith said. 

Unlike Missouri, the road to legalization could take a little longer for marijuana advocates in Kansas. Citizens in the Sunflower State can’t initiate a vote on new laws through a ballot-initiative or referendum. 

Only about two dozen states in the U.S. give people the power to petition for a constitutional amendment or ballot measure. That includes all four of Kansas’ neighboring states;…

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