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An Internet hoax wrongly claims that Florida has become the next state to legalize recreational marijuana.
Facebook users flagged the post as being potentially fabricated, as part of the social network’s efforts to combat online hoaxes.
The article falsely claims that Florida lawmakers passed a bill to legalize medical and recreational marijuana in order to boost the economy and create jobs. It claims that the law will be in place before Easter, which is April 1.
The article included bogus quotes from Rep. Janet Cruz, a Democrat from Tampa, that the bill would stimulate the economy. Cruz is also quoted noting the economic advantages Colorado has after legalizing recreational marijuana.
Those quotes are made up. Karol Molinares, deputy communications director for the Florida House of Representatives’ Democratic Office, said Cruz never said those things.
And no marijuana law like this has passed.
In fact, the site also posted the same fake story about Wisconsin, even using the same quotes, only changing the names of state representatives.
Florida voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment in 2016 allowing for the use of medical marijuana. Lawmakers produced a bill in 2017 to implement rules and regulations, according to the Associated Press.
A site known to peddle online hoaxes claimed that Florida passed a bill making recreational marijuana legal. But that’s not true. The story was repurposed from a debunked fake story about Wisconsin passing the same fictional legislation.
We rate this claim Pants on Fire.
ABC News-US, Florida bill legalizing recreational use of marijuana, March 17, 2018
ABC News, homepage
U.S. News and World Report, Not real news: recreational marijuana isn’t legal in Florida, March 25, 2018
Snopes, Did Florida pass a bill legalizing recreational use of marijuana? March 23, 2018
Lead Stories Hoax Alert, Fake news: Florida did not pass bill legalizing recreational use of marijuana, March 17, 2018
Lead Stories Hoax Alert, Fake news: Bill not passed to legalize marijuana in Wisconsin, not expected to be in place by year end, Dec. 6, 2017
Karol Molinares, Linkedin Page
Tallahassee Democrat, Recreational marijuana in Florida likely on hold for years, Jan. 7, 2018
Tallahassee Democrat, Justice Department cracks down on legal marijuana with rollback of Obama policy, Jan. 4, 2018
Janet Cruz, Florida House of Representatives
Tampa Bay Times/Associated Press, Not real news: Recreational marijuana isn’t legal in Florida, March 25, 2018
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