Despite statements to the contrary, there are not yet enough signatures to put recreational marijuana on the November ballot.
The news comes after some leaders of the movement admitted they misrepresented the number of signatures already collected.
Green the Vote claimed they had already collected more than enough signatures, but they are actually thousands short. It’s unlikely they will make Wednesday’s 5:00 p.m. deadline.
In a live video posted to Green the Vote’s Facebook page, several current and one former board member admit to inflating the number of signatures collected. They say the reason was to keep people motivated.
“Quite frankly, it’s a big lie. It’s a big lie,” said former Green the Vote Board Member Dody Sullivan. “He threw a number out there regardless of the consequences to my conscience, to his conscience, to the fact that you were all out there busting your butts to get this done, thinking we were so much further ahead than we actually were.”
The “he” Sullivan referred to is Isaac Caviness, who says the Facebook live video took him off guard.
“She and I made that decision together to announce what we believed we had versus what was physically in the store,” said Caviness. “I take blame on that. I am the leader of this organization and I should have kept it 100 percent accurate or not gave a total at all.”
Caviness and Sullivan have apologized, saying the decision wasn’t malicious. They say they thought the number of signatures they collected would catch up to the estimates they were giving to the public.
“It is important for people to understand that this movement is bigger than just one person or two people,” stated Caviness. “Don’t let your opinion of me tarnish those 1,700 volunteers.”
Whatever the actual number, Green the Vote volunteers say they aren’t giving up trying to put State Question 797 on the ballot.
“I’m not in it for Isaac. I’m not in it for Dody,” said volunteer Cody Stidham. “I’m in it for Green the Vote. I’m in it because I believe in this cause.”
Green the Vote actually has 78,000 signatures, not the 132,000 they announced over the weekend.
They need a total of 124,000 by Wednesday’s deadline.