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Nebraska Supreme Court releases ruling on ballot initiatives

Published: Sep. 10, 2020 at 3:17 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - The Nebraska Supreme Court made two major rulings on Thursday, pulling a medical marijuana vote from the November ballot, but reversing the Secretary of State’s decision and allowing a gambling initiative to be voted on.

The decisions were handed down just after 3 p.m. on Thursday.

Both ballot initiatives received more than the required number of signatures to appear on the ballot. However, Secretary of State Bob Evnen ruled that the gambling initiative, “failed to comply with the single-subject rule in the Nebraska Constitution and are confusing.”

It was then passed along to the Nebraska Supreme Court for the ruling where that decision was overturned.

Therefore, the gambling initiative will appear on the ballot in November.

The vote was 4-3 in favor.

The medical marijuana initiative was approved by Evnen, but Lancaster County Sheriff Terry Wagner filed a lawsuit challenging its legality.

The Supreme Court sided with Wagner, saying the initiative violated the single-subject rule, and constituted it as 'logrolling’, which is illegal in Nebraska.

The vote was 5-2 against medical marijuana.

The following statement was released on the Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana Facebook page:

“We just heard and the news is not good. Like all of you, we are absolutely devastated by the Supreme Court ruling. But this fight is not over. Nothing changes the fact that an overwhelming majority of Nebraskans stand with the patients and families who deserve compassion and safe access to medical cannabis. We will be regrouping and updating you all soon with plans for our next steps.”

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