The Florida Primary Election and Cannabis

The Florida primary election is approaching, meaning it’s time for voters to learn about candidates. Here is what some of those vying for statewide office have to say about cannabis.


The two leading Democratic candidates in the Florida gubernatorial primary support cannabis reform. Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried self-describes as “Florida’s leading statewide advocate on cannabis issues and the sole statewide elected official to call for full cannabis legalization.” Last April, Fried sued the federal government “over federal cannabis policies that prohibit Floridians from purchasing a firearm on the sole basis that they are a state-law-abiding medical marijuana patient.” According to Fried, this constitutes a violation of patients’ Second Amendment rights.

Fried’s main rival in the Florida primary is Charlie Crist, who in 2006 successfully ran for governor on a Republican ticket. Perhaps eager to cement his progressive bona fides, Crist is not ceding any ground to Fried on cannabis to Fried, tweeting, “As Governor of Florida I will legalize marijuana.”

How this Florida primary race is shaping up depends on who you believe, with narratives going from from a “commanding” Crist lead to a “dead heat.” Come what may, however, the eventual Democratic nominee will be on record as supporting

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