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Marijuana legalization is on the ballot in Oklahoma on Tuesday: Here’s what to know

(WISH Photo)

(CNN) — Oklahoma voters on Tuesday will decide whether to legalize recreational marijuana in a special election.

Supporters of legalizing recreational marijuana in the Sooner State have pushed to see this measure on the ballot for years. Due to legal challenges and ballot inclusion deadlines, State Question 820 was left off the ballot in November.

It is one of several ballot measures on cannabis use that has been considered by voters in recent months. During the midterms, voters in five states considered legalizing recreational marijuana. In November, the ballot measures failed in Arkansas, North Dakota and South Dakota, while voters in Maryland and Missouri were able to pass similar ballot measures.

What are voters deciding on?

A “yes” vote would legalize recreational marijuana for adults ages 21 and older. It would also allow possession of up to 1 ounce of marijuana and the growth of up to six mature marijuana plants and up to six seedlings.

A “no” vote would reject legalizing recreational marijuana.

If passed, the measure would go into effect on June 5. It would make Oklahoma the 22nd state in the US to legalize recreational marijuana.

Legalization of recreational marijuana would also result in a 15% tax of sales in the state.

Yes. In 2018, Oklahoma approved a ballot measure legalizing the use, sale and growth of medical marijuana. Recreational use of marijuana, however, is still illegal in the state.

Who is for and against the measure?

Supporters of the measure argue the legalization will bring in new tax revenue. Yes on 820, a campaign in favor of recreational marijuana legalization, released an economic analysis completed by Vicente Sederberg LLP and the Oklahoma Cannabis Industry Association. It found the state could gain $821 million in medical and recreational taxes over four years if the measure passes, with $434 million coming solely from the new recreational tax.

GOP lawmakers in Oklahoma have been vocal about opposing the measure leading up to the election.

“Oklahoma has seen marijuana use skyrocket, hurting our communities and families,” US Sen. James Lankford tweeted last week. “Protect our kids by voting NO on March 7 on State Question 820 to protect our state from a dramatic increase of Marijuana sales.”

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt said in a news briefing last month he “thinks it’s a bad idea” because recreational marijuana is still illegal federally and believes “the feds need to make a decision about marijuana.”

Those opposed to recreational marijuana in Oklahoma, including Stitt, also have noted that the state already has medical marijuana.

“We already have medical marijuana to help the sick or the people that need it for pain relief, etc. And so, I think marijuana is bad for young people,” Stitt said. “I think people need to understand the side effects of that. I think we need to be protecting Oklahoma from a recreational standpoint.”

Michelle Tilley, Yes on 820 campaign director, argues that people in Oklahoma “should have access to marijuana without having to go through those steps” required to receive medical marijuana.

“There are people who use marijuana recreationally, much like you would go and have a glass of wine or a beer,” Tilley said. “We think that there needs to be a safe, regulated product here in Oklahoma for those people to purchase without the threat of being arrested or put into jail and have their lives ruined.”