Florida Governor Ron DeSantis cast doubt on the medical necessity of marijuana for at least some of the state’s 850,000 registered patients. While speaking to supporters this week in a lead-up to the Jan. 15 Iowa caucuses, the Republican presidential candidate suggested that some in Florida may be using the program as a “pretext” for recreational use.
“Look there was, you know, how much of that is medicinal versus how much of it is, ‘That’s the pretext for it’? I don’t know, but it is in our constitution,” DeSantis said in Dubuque, reported FloridaPolitics.com.
Change Of Heart
DeSantis once criticized the strict regulations of his predecessor Rick Scott. One well-known advocate even said DeSantis “used to be one of the coolest Republicans when it came to weed.”
However, his recent comments suggest a hardening stance to recreational marijuana legalization, which is expected to be decided at the ballot box in 2024 in Florida.
Responding to a question about vertical integration, DeSantis said he was opposed to it as a matter of principle, saying, “as a general matter with programs, you want there to be open field and competition that’s going to make it better for consumers and that will make it better for taxpayers,” noted the outlet.
The governor’s comments on competition align with his Attorney General Ashley Moody (R) who accused the state’s largest cannabis operator Trulieve TCNNF of “entrenching their monopoly of the marijuana…