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Medical Marijuana Dispensary Investigated in Free Pot to Vote Lansing Giveaway

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by hearit

hearit's picture
In The News

Perhaps the thought was that a relaxed voter is a good voter: Some question what could’ve been smoked when a Michigan medical marijuana dispensary decided to offer half a gram of free pot to those registering to vote for Lansing city council members. The pot clinic's being investigated by the attorney general. It's just trying to remember what for.

It probably seemed like a good idea. At least under the right circumstances.

The “Your Healthy Choice Clinic” in Lansing, Michigan, was giving away marijuana for free – to participants in its promotion to actively encourage voting. What’s being questioned is whether that ‘promotion’ included a suggestion as to who to vote for. Advertised on its website, the Lansing locale was giving away the good stuff right prior to a vote for city council seats and (with coincidental timing) shortly after the Lansing City Council had recently approved capping the number of medical marijuana dispensaries while setting a $1,000 application fee for those pot clinics.

The woman who owns Your Healthy Choice Clinic” in Lansing says the goal in giving away medical-grade pot wasn’t to try and buy votes. Heck, no.

Shekina Pena says: "We really got to fight to get the voters out there because the polls are showing there's 4-5,000 people in Lansing that are patients or caregivers," Pena had told WILX TV. "So we need those 4-5,000 people to come forth to the polls and vote for whomever they feel is in support of what they want for [marijuana] access." No bias there. But that part wasn't really the problem.

"We let them [the voters registering] know how we [at the medical marijuana dispensary] feel, we don't tell them who to vote for. We definitely want to support the ones [city council members] who are supporting us [the clinic]." Anyone confused yet?

It seems that swapping out free pot in exchange for registering new voters, while a fight for city council members who will support medical marijuana dispensaries is happening simultaneously, tends to enter a bit of a touchy zone.

The clinic's marijuana giveaway apparently didn't go over so well with some local politicians. After a state senator’s gripe, it seems the attorney general kind of got pushed into the position of reviewing whether the pot dispensary may have crossed the line or violated a legal boundary.

If it happens to be discovered that the pot clinic tied its offer for free marijuana to votes for, or against, any particular person in the race for city council, legal trouble could be on the horizon. The dispensary’s owner claims that didn’t happen, but the marijuana store’s slogan used in the promotion – "Vote for us and we'll vote for you” – tends to suggest otherwise.

The reality is, the Michigan attorney general need not worry too much: Even if the medical marijuana dispensary happened to make any type of ‘suggestion’ as to which city council members to vote for, the pot clinic would’ve been lucky indeed if those voters remembered by the time they got to Lansing polls.

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