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Plain Talk: A new campaign to legalize marijuana in North Dakota

Two backers of a new ballot measure to legalize recreational marijuana join this episode of Plain Talk to discuss their proposal.

Marijuana plants
File photo of marijuana plants.
Via Pixabay.

MINOT, N.D. — Medical marijuana is legal in North Dakota, having been approved by voters by way of a ballot measure.

Recreational marijuana, however, has taken a rockier road. Multiple ballot measure campaigns have failed in the past. House Bill 1420, considered during the last legislative session, and which would have also implemented legalization of nonmedical use of marijuana, also failed.

But the proponents of legalization are giving it another shot, and this time they're perhaps more organized than they have been before. On this episode of Plain Talk, state Rep. Matt Ruby, R-Minot, as well as Fargo-based attorney Mark Friese of the Vogel Law Firm, join to talk about their proposed measure.

Their campaign is called New Approach North Dakota , and they have until July to get the requisite number of signatures to put it on the ballot.

Also on this episode, my Wednesday co-host Chad Oban and I discuss a draft bill that would prohibit lawmakers from leading property to the state, as well as the intrigues of the upcoming June primaries, particularly in the legislative races.

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"You could hear an audible groan in the chamber," one lawmaker told me shortly afterward. "Absolutely embarrassing."

Opinion by Rob Port
Rob Port is a news reporter, columnist, and podcast host for the Forum News Service. He has an extensive background in investigations and public records. He has covered political events in North Dakota and the upper Midwest for two decades. Reach him at rport@forumcomm.com. Click here to subscribe to his Plain Talk podcast.
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