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Publix Heiress Donates Serious Cash To Fight Medical Cannabis

Publix Heiress Donates Serious Cash To Fight Medical Cannabis


Publix Heiress Donates Serious Cash To Fight Medical Cannabis

Publix is Ant-Pot

Long Story Short

The Publix heiress named Carol Jenkins Barnett has been donating huge amounts of money to an organization called Drug Free Florida. The group is leading the charge against medical marijuana in Florida. Now, with a new bill to legalize medical cannabis coming up for vote this November, Barnett and Drug Free Florida are both ratcheting up their anti-cannabis efforts.

The Details

Jenkins Barnett is the daughter of George Jenkins, the founder of a wildly successful chain of supermarkets called Publix. As the company’s largest shareholder, she’s apparently worth $1.8 billion.

And according to local sources, she’s been using some of that money to help fund an anti-medical cannabis campaign. Earlier this month, Jenkins Barnett reportedly donated $800,000 to the hyper-conservative group Drug Free Florida.

She made a slightly smaller donation of $500,000 back in 2014. That year, Drug Free Florida helped defeat a bill that would have legalized medical cannabis across the board. Current laws allow only people with terminal illnesses to use certain types of non-smokeable cannabis.

Jenkins Barnett’s most recent donation is helping to fund Drug Free Florida’s ongoing campaign against a new bill that will be on the state’s ballot this November. If it passes, Amendment 2 will allow people to access and use medical marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation.

A recent survey found that 77% of Floridians support Amendment 2. Despite that popular support, Drug Free Florida has launched a large scale campaign against the bill.

Drug Free Florida’s Reefer Madness Campaign

Drug Free Florida has waged what many are calling a Reefer Madness style attack campaign against medical cannabis.

Publix Heiress Donates Serious Cash To Fight Medical Cannabis


The group has aired a series of ads that frame medical cannabis as nothing more than a front for selling super potent, dangerous drugs to addicts and gullible children. The group repeatedly claims that Amendment 2 is just an excuse for trying to legitimize seedy drug dealers.

Not surprisingly, the medical cannabis community in Florida has taken issue with how the group talks about Amendment 2.

Drug Free Florida Backed By Billionaires

Apparently Jenkins Barnett isn’t the only super rich person to give money to Drug Free Florida. Her $500,000 donation to the group’s 2014 efforts was dwarfed by what casino mogul Sheldon Adelson gave to the group. That year, Adelson donated more than $5 million to Drug Free Florida.

Publix Heiress Donates Serious Cash To Fight Medical Cannabis

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Nick Lindsey

Nick is a Green Rush Daily staff writer from Fort Collins, Colorado. He has been at the epicenter of the cannabis boom from the beginning. He holds a Masters in English Literature and a Ph.D. in cannabis (figuratively of course).

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