A medical marijuana dispensary in Michigan appeared to be offering free marijuana to its customers if they register to vote. However, the owner is now contradicting what she herself reportedly wrote on her website.
According to The Washington Independent, the owner of the dispensary in Lansing, Skekina Pena, wrote this on her site:
Protect Your Access! Vote 2011:
All dispensaries are doing a voter registration drive. If you sign up at Your Healthy Choice, we will assist you in filling out the registration form and will mail it out for you. We believe in power in numbers and everyone taking a stand. So in appreciation, we will reward legal patients with a .5 gram free or a free medible! I’m planning an event for the preliminary voting that will have shuttles to the polls! We have to amend our Lansing ordinance! May God bless our efforts!
However now the sentence about the free marijuana offer is gone from the site, and Pena denied making the offer.
“If they fill [the voter registration form] out, we are offering a compensation of a discount on their purchases that day,” Pena told Michigan Messenger. “That’s it. To help out those who wasted their gas to come in here.”
It's not clear why the apparent change was made. The dispensary is also supporting a slate of candidates, and some of the candidates and their opponents were critical of the offer.
“I thought medical marijuana was to be used for medical purposes, not as a bribe for a vote,” said candidate Carol Wood. “We can do better as a community than trading pot for votes."
There is even a chance that the free pot offer was a crime.
“Generally, if it advocates voting on a specific date and for or against certain candidates, it is likely an illegal inducement to vote,” said Secretary of State spokesman Fred Woodhams. “In this situation, you have someone potentially offering a valuable consideration to induce some one to vote.”