One of two Arkansas MMJ campaigns submits signatures

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Weeks in advance of a July deadline, one of two competing medical marijuana legalization campaigns in Arkansas has submitted signatures to the secretary of state’s office in a bid to get the second group to abandon its initiative.

Arkansans for Compassionate Care (ACC) turned in 117,469 signatures to the state on Monday, according to the Associated Press. It needs 67,887 valid signatures to qualify for the ballot because its measure would change state statute.

The second campaign, which is being run by Little Rock attorney David Couch, needs to submit 84,859 valid signatures by July 8, a higher threshold because his measure would amend the state constitution.

Speaking at press conference, ACC spokeswoman Melissa Fults urged Couch to end his campaign, arguing that the possibility of having two pro-MMJ measures on the ballot could cause both to fail in November.

But Couch rejected Fults’ call, and said his campaign has already gathered over 50,000 signatures and that it “would be foolish for us to stop now,” the AP reported.

The Arkansas secretary of state now has 30 days to review ACC’s petitions and either certify the measure for the ballot or reject it. If ACC gathered at least 75% of the signatures necessary, it would have another 30 days to gather additional signatures.