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John Morgan’s Twitter account probes gubernatorial candidates on marijuana

Trial lawyer, outspoken medical marijuana advocate and potential Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Morgan assumed the role of a different profession on Wednesday: journalist.

In a rapid series of Wednesday morning tweets fired at each of the major gubernatorial candidate, Morgan sought public, official comment on the candidates’ stance on the legalization of marijuana.

The tweets began at 9 a.m., just an hour and a half before Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine‘s officially declared his bid for governor. They garnered a bit of engagement, allowing Morgan to draw attention to himself despite the Levine-driven coverage of the day.

But perhaps Morgan did not intend to take the spotlight away from the mayor — maybe he’s genuinely probing a gubernatorial field that now boasts four Democratic candidates and two major Republicans.

His genuine intention could’ve been to see if a candidate aligned with his beliefs on marijuana — which Morgan has very clearly established as a pet issue. If that were the case, perhaps he’d rather stand on the sideline during the campaign next year, instead pushing his pro-pot agenda through another candidate. It certainly would be easier than facing a field of four Democratic primary candidates, and later going against the winner of a Republican lineup that includes Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and Republican state Sen. Jack Latvala, with looming potential bids from House Speaker Richard Corcoran and U.S. Congressman Ron Desantis.

Either way, it shook things up in the Twitterverse of Florida politics, and the novice journalist got some big responses, too.

Latvala, of Clearwater, was first to respond. It was humorously concise.

Then came Levine’s answer, for which the dogged reporter Morgan for the first time felt the insulting, but not atypical sensation of a politician dodging a question.

The mayor carefully circumnavigated the question of marijuana legalization, instead announcing his support for medical marijuana and “building on #MiamiBeach” where pot was decriminalized.

As for the rest of the candidates, you could say Morgan has ‘reached out for comment but has not received a response at the time of this article’s publishing.’ In other words, he hasn’t yet received responses.

UPDATE: Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum avoided ambiguity in answering Morgan’s question Thursday afternoon, earning a digital fistbump from his possible Democratic Primary rival.

The rest of the candidates – Putnam, former Congresswoman Gwen Graham and Orlando businessman Chris King – are still suffering from a bout of cottonmouth, so to speak.

Written By

Danny McAuliffe is a Tallahassee correspondent for Florida Politics. He is a graduate of Florida State University, where he served as the editor of the FSView & Florida Flambeau. He is a lifelong Floridian and indulges in swimming, hiking, running and memes when the news cycle permits. Reach him at

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