Cannabis Legislative Scorecard

Once again recreational Cannabis is on the ballot here in South Dakota but it’s also the time that we select our representatives in the State House and Senate. So we thought it would be a good idea to take a look at the incumbents voting records as it pertains to Cannabis legislation so voters can make an informed decision about who they are re-electing.

If you support cannabis reform and legalization we encourage you to take a look at the 2022 Legislative Scorecard put together by the Cannabis Industry Association of South Dakota, New Approach South Dakota and South Dakotan’s for Better Marijuana Laws. So before you cast your vote take a look at this list and see how your local representative voted on Cannabis laws during the last legislative session. If IM 27 fails then we will need as many advocates for reform elected as possible.

You can view the scorecard in it’s entirety at

Initiated Measure 27 is on the ballot this year to give voters the option to make recreational Cannabis legal once again. However it is certainly not a given that it will pass this year like it did previously in 2020. This time the measure doesn’t have the benefit of also having medical marijuana on the ballot at the same time, voters overwhelmingly approved IM 26 (medical marijuana) with 70% of the vote. To compare recreational Cannabis only received 54% of the vote in 2020. This is also a mid term election, where voter turn out tends to be lower than in Presidential election years. Voter turnout for the 2022 Primaries was at 32%, which apparently was the highest its been in a decade (doesn’t sound all that great though). Younger people also tend to vote less during the mid-term elections as well and they are some of the biggest supporters of recreational Cannabis. There also was no real organized opposition to Amendment A (recreational Cannabis) in 2020, this year the Karen’s of South Dakota are in full force, they have organized and spent a lot of money advertising against IM 27 using the tired old mantra of “ won’t somebody please think of the children“.

So with all that said we have reached the point of “Will They/Won’t They” pass the measure this Tuesday. We sure hope they do of course, but IF the measure fails, I just don’t see the Legislature taking up the issue in January. Lawmakers will point to the results and say “the people have spoken and we must follow the will of the people”. (conveniently this time of course..)

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