A judge's gavel rests on a desk inside of a U.S. court room.

Beth Cortez-Neavel

Florida Attorney Sues Over No-Smoking Provisions in Legislature-Approved MMJ Bill

As promised, Orlando, Florida-based attorney John Morgan has sued the state over the no-smoking provisions included in the medical cannabis law approved by lawmakers, the Miami Herald reports. Morgan is the author of the voter-approved law, and was a key financial backer throughout the successful campaign last November.

In the lawsuit, Morgan, and his lead attorney former Democratic House Speaker Jon Mills, argue that by banning smoking the legislature is “redefining the constitutionally defined term ‘medical use.’”

“…The Legislature substitutes its medical judgment for that of ‘a licensed Florida physician’ and is in direct conflict with the specifically articulated Constitutional process,” the lawsuit, filed on behalf of Florida for Care, states. “Inhalation is a medically effective and efficient way to deliver Tetrahydrocannabinol [THC], and other cannabinoids, to the bloodstream.”

The constitutional amendment approved by more than 71 percent of Floridians allowed the legislature to ban smoking in public places, but Morgan argues that the legislature’s smoking ban is an overreach in violation of the state Constitution.

“The [constitutional] statement unambiguously says that smoking medical marijuana in a private place in compliance with the provisions of the amendment is legal,” the suit says.

Language included in the legislature-approved bill defined “medical use” of cannabis to exclude “possession, use or administration of marijuana in a form for smoking,” which the lawsuit contends “redefined and narrowed the definition of marijuana in direct conflict” with the Constitution and will of the voters.

Morgan argues that if the legislature was interested in keeping people safe from smoking they would tax tobacco “to the hilt” and accuses the politicians of being driven by nothing “other than money and donors” – including “Big Pharma.”

Morgan said if lawmakers don’t allow for smoking as a delivery method, he would back a constitutional amendment to legalize recreational use in the state.

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