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Courts / Law

Fact-Checking Gaetz on Medical Marijuana Amendment


This November, voters in Florida will decide the fate of medical marijuana.          

Critics of the measure say this will open the floodgates and eventually lead to recreational use of pot.  Senate President Don Gaetz said recently that the way the proposed amendment is worded, just about any medical condition - real or perceived - will allow folks to get pot.

On the TV program "Florida Face to Face," Gaetz said "The ballot initiative is the legalization of marijuana. It's doesn't require a physician writing a prescription and it can be for purposes as specious as having a back that needs to be scratched."

"This is actually very complicated," said Amy Hollyfield of "PolitiFact Florida." We ultimately rated it 'half true,' but let me explain it. He talked about whether you need a doctor to write a prescription for it. And he's right, it doesn't require a doctor to write a prescription because under federal law, doctors can't do it. But it does require that a doctor write you a certification after examining you."

But what about getting medical marijuana for a "back that needs to be scratched?"

"It does have to go through a doctor and it has to be determined that there's a debilitating condition," Hollyfield explained. "The word 'debilitating' is part of this language and there's lot of conditions that would qualify under the definition. But, a back that simply needs to be scratched wouldn't seem to qualify."

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