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Green the Vote board members admit recreational marijuana petition numbers were inflated

Posted at 8:37 AM, Aug 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-08 06:36:16-04

Board members with "Green the Vote," the group collecting signatures to get recreational marijuana initiatives on the November ballot, admitted to lying about the numbers it had collected.

Three members came forward on a Facebook Live video posted Monday night. The video has since been deleted.

In late July, Green The Vote said the petitions had surpassed its goal of signatures to get on the November ballot. The group reported SQ 797 had collected 132,527 signatures as of Sunday, July 29th.

In the video, one person said the actual number collected on July 31 was 31,244.

"The numbers that have been spoken are not even close to what is in the office," one member said in the video posted online. "Quite frankly, it's a big lie," said another.

The group admitted they thought the signatures would catch up to the numbers being announced to the public and the media, but they didn't.

The President of Green the Vote, Isaac Caviness, posted a Facebook Live video on his own, in which he responded to the claims of fudged numbers.

In the video, Caviness said in the first several weeks of gathering signatures for recreational marijuana, the numbers were low, and the group estimated the number, rather than establishing a hard number. Caviness said about a week and a half ago, he realized how far off the estimate was from the actual number of signatures gathered. 

Caviness said to his best estimate, SQ 797 has gathered 78,000 signatures, and SQ 796 has gathered 72,00 signatures.

He said he still believes there's a strong possibility that once the group finishes counting the signatures over the next several days, the petitions will have enough signatures have been placed on the ballot. 

Green the Vote is pushing State Question 797, which seeks to allow anyone 21 years old or over "to legally possess, use, grow, process and sell marijuana and derivatives within the rules set by the Oklahoma Cannabis Commission."

The group is also pushing to get State Question 796 on the ballot, which would allow marijuana to be classified as an herbal drug to be regulated by the Oklahoma Cannabis Commission.

The group is working to get at least 125,000 signatures for each petition by August 8.

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