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More Signatures Needed For Legalized Marijuana To Be On Ballot


Backers of legalized marijuana suffered a potential setback today. The state's top election official says the group "Responsible Ohio" lacks enough signatures to place the issue before voters in November. 

Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted says fewer than half the 695,000 signatures submitted by ‘Responsible Ohio’ were valid. Husted cites three reasons most signatures were rejected

"The signer was not registered to vote. The person signed more than once or they signed a petition in a county where they didn't live." 

‘Responsible Ohio’ says it will collect the needed signatures.  The group has 10 days to collect  an additional 29, 509 valid signatures by July 30th to qualify for this November's ballot. 

Campaign organizers said the submitted signatures included many newly registered voters. After early indications that some of the registrations were faulty, Husted cautioned boards of elections to use extra vigilance in checking the petitions.

"Several boards of elections reported to us that there were some irregularities related to the validity of the signatures that were being submitted. And when that happened in a number of counties we alerted the boards to pay attention to potentially fraudulent activity." 

The proposed constitutional amendment would allow adults 21 and over to buy marijuana. It would also establish a network of 10 authorized growing locations around the state.