Medical Marijuana

Minn.: State seeks public input on adding qualifying conditions

October 23rd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Please consider voicing your support for expanding Minnesota’s medical marijuana program! 

On Wednesday, a medical marijuana review panel will meet to discuss the petitions to add opioid use disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, panic disorder, and psoriasis as qualifying conditions to the state’s medical cannabis program.

What: Public meeting on adding conditions, including an opportunity for public comment

When: Wednesday, October 24, from 1:00-4:00 p.m.

Where: Room 300N, State Office Building, 100 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155

You can check out MPP’s letter in support of adding opiate use disorder here, in case you want to make any of the same points.

If you are unable to attend, you may also submit written comments in support of adding one or more conditions.

Separately, Election Day is fast approaching! You can vote early in person until Monday, November 5. You can also register and vote on Election Day!

Here’s a look at where gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana policy reform: Tim Walz (D) is supportive of legalizing and regulating marijuana for adults’ use, while Jeff Johnson (R) opposes legalization but supports medical marijuana.

Don’t miss this opportunity to voice your support for marijuana policy reform, and be sure to get out and vote!

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General

Colorado’s Nov. 6 general election is just 15 days away!

October 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

The state’s choice of governor will likely have a huge impact on state cannabis policy

Vote counting officially begins today, October 22, for the upcoming general election, which takes place on November 6. Many voters received ballots over the last several days by mail. The race for governor includes noted cannabis policy champion Congressman Jared Polis, whom MPP rates with an A+ grade.

Current Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper is term-limited and must step down, and between the major party candidates, Jared Polis (D) has the clear advantage when it comes for support for good cannabis policy. He is the only candidate who supported the legalization initiative in 2012 and has been a strong advocate for improving federal law as Congressman for U.S. House District 2. Among other achievements in Congress, he started the Congressional Cannabis Caucus.

By contrast, current State Treasurer Walker Stapleton (R) offers only limited support at best for cannabis policy reform. He voiced support for stricter regulations for medical marijuana during a recent public forum and referred to Polis’ stance as a “radical extreme plan.” MPP gives him a C.

The positions of two other candidates, Bill Hammons of the Unity Party of Colorado and Scott Helker of the Libertarian party, are unclear. Neither candidate has a prior voting record on cannabis legislation, nor public statements on cannabis policy.

For more information on Colorado’s Election Day, be sure to visit the state’s elections website here. And most of all, be sure to vote this general election in Colorado!

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General

Idaho: Early voting begins October 22!

October 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

The Idaho general election is set for Tuesday, November 6. Early voting begins today, October 22, and ends November 2. You can also register and vote on Election Day!

Here’s a look at where gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana reform: Paulette Jordan (D) is supportive of decriminalization and medical marijuana, and is also supportive of moving toward legalization and regulation for adult-use. Brad Little (R) opposes legalization and opposes even a limited CBD medical marijuana bill.

Here you can find more information on Idaho’s current marijuana policies.

Check out the state’s website for more information on voter registration and where to cast your ballot.

Please forward this message to your network, and be sure to get out and vote!

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General

Florida: Early voting begins October 22!

October 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

In some parts of the state, registered voters can cast their ballot early beginning today! The early voting schedule varies by county and will end on Saturday, November 3. Florida’s general election is set for Tuesday, November 6.

Here’s a look at where gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana policy reform: Andrew Gillum (D) supports legalizing and regulating marijuana for adults’ use, while Ron DeSantis (R) opposes legalization but is supportive of implementing Florida’s medical marijuana law. You can find information on Florida’s current marijuana policies here.

For more information on early voting and Election Day voting, including where you can cast your ballot and when voting locations will be open, check out the state’s elections website here.

Please forward this to your network, and be sure to get out and vote!

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General

Texas: Marijuana policy voter guide released, early voting begins October 22

October 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Our allies at Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy released a voter guide for the upcoming election. Early voting starts today, so please check it out, spread the word, and head to the polls!

Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy’s coalition partners surveyed state and federal candidates and provided their unedited responses. They also included voting records from the last two legislative sessions for state-level incumbents.

Find out where your candidates stand.

Early Voting: October 22 – November 2, 2018
Election Day: November 6, 2018

For more information on where, how, and when to vote, visit VoteTexas.Gov.

Unfortunately, Texas doesn’t allow voters to collect petitions to put initiatives on the ballot. Only state lawmakers can initiate changes to the state’s marijuana policies. Who gets elected in November will be key to deciding when and if Texas enacts a medical cannabis law and stops criminalizing cannabis consumers.

So, please get educated and get voting!

Many thanks to Heather Fazio of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy, Texas NORML, and everyone else who worked on the voter guide!

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Medical Marijuana

Rhode Island: Dept. of Health approves medical marijuana for autism

October 18th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Great news! The Department of of Health has announced that Rhode Island families can now access medical marijuana to treat autism. The decision was issued this week after a petition was filed in April to add autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana.

The announcement imposes some stipulations for physicians interested in recommending medical marijuana for patients with ASD, including that they first try FDA-approved medications and CBD products. The statement can be read in full here.

The Health Department held a public hearing on ASD and medical marijuana in August. At the hearing, Nicole Cervantes, a mother of a son with ASD, testified that CBD had significantly improved her child’s condition. “He has been able to focus more,” she said. “He no longer bangs his head.”

In recent years, families across the country have spoken out about how medical marijuana has helped minimize the worst symptoms of ASD. Rhode Island now joins seven other states that make some allowance for medical marijuana in the treatment of autism.

This is a great step forward for Rhode Island’s medical marijuana program. Let’s keep working to make further improvements to the state’s marijuana policies.

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Tax and Regulate

The fight for Measure 3 is heating up in North Dakota

October 17th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

With less than three weeks until Election Day, efforts to pass Measure 3, which would legalize marijuana for adults in North Dakota, are ramping up. While opponents rely on the standard prohibitionist fear tactics, the Yes on 3 team is sharing a positive message of personal freedom and criminal justice reform with their neighbors across the state.

Please contribute here to help them reach and educate more voters. And if you live in North Dakota, commit to voting for Measure 3 and encourage friends, colleagues, and neighbors to do the same.

In a sign of growing support, state Republican legislative leaders Rep. Rick Becker and Rep. Luke Simons recently made public statements in favor of the legalization initiative. Legendary travel host and anti-prohibition activist Rick Steves also visited the state to tout the benefits of legalizing marijuana, which he’s seen in his home state of Washington.

Thanks to the tireless efforts of volunteer advocates, North Dakota could become the next state to legalize marijuana for adults.

Please donate to the campaign and give the Yes on 3 team the help they need to fight back against their opponents’ anti-marijuana propaganda. And follow the campaign by liking their Facebook page.

With our help, they can win this.

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General

Vermont general election voter guide published

October 16th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Early voting is already underway for the Vermont general election, which is scheduled for Tuesday, November 6. Before you vote, please check out our legislative voter guide to learn where candidates for state representative and state senator stand on marijuana policy. Then, please read our guide on the candidates for governor and lieutenant governor.

This year, we sent candidates a survey consisting of only one question: “Do you support regulating and taxing the production and sale of cannabis in Vermont for use by adults 21 and older?” Our voter guides include responses from candidates for state representative, state senator, and governor, in addition to public statements and incumbent legislators’ votes on the legalization bill. If a candidate in your district has not responded to the survey, we encourage you to reach out to them directly and ask their position!

For information on where and how to vote in Vermont, click here.

Again, please take time to read our voter guide for state legislative races and our gubernatorial voter guide before you vote in the November 6 general election. Please share the voter guides with your family and friends!

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General

South Carolina: November 6 is General Election Day!

October 16th, 2018 1 Comment Kate Zawidzki

South Carolina’s general election, set for Tuesday, November 6, is just 21 days away. The governor’s race and every House of Representatives seat is on the ballot. This is a particularly important election as lawmakers are expected to vote on a medical cannabis bill in 2019, and it will likely need the support of the governor. Those in office will have a huge impact on the future of South Carolina’s patients and their treatment options.

Our voter guide is now available online. It includes all House candidates who either co-sponsored the 2018 medical cannabis bill or who responded to our questionnaire on medical cannabis support. It also includes committee votes and the candidates for governor. While James Smith (D) is a strong supporter of allowing medical cannabis, Gov. Henry McMaster (R) said he would not sign a bill unless law enforcement signs off — which they show no inclination of doing.

Voters’ choices this year will have a huge impact on the future of cannabis policy in the state. If you are registered to vote, know where your candidates stand, and be sure to vote!

If you haven’t registered to vote yet, you have until October 17. For more information, including polling places and other key information, check out the state’s elections website here.

 

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General

The Illinois general election is around the corner

October 16th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

The Illinois general election takes place on November 6. It’s fast approaching, and voters this year will have a huge impact on the future of cannabis policy in Illinois. Lawmakers continue to look closely at ending marijuana prohibition and legalizing cannabis for adults 21 and over, and the differences between the two major party candidates for governor couldn’t be bigger on this issue: JB Pritzker (D) has come out in strong support of legalizing and regulating marijuana, while Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) remains opposed.

Take a minute to check out our Illinois Voter Guide and see where the candidates on your ballot stand on cannabis reform. Not all the candidates have a voting history on cannabis bills in the state House or Senate, but for those that do, we’ve summarized the voting record on key cannabis-related bills over the past several years.

If you haven’t registered to vote yet, you have until October 21 to register online. For more information, including where you can cast your ballot and when voting locations will be open, check out the state’s website here.

In nearby Michigan, voters will have an opportunity to legalize marijuana themselves. But in Illinois, there’s no citizen initiative process, so only lawmakers can end the wasteful and cruel policy of prohibition. This year’s elections will likely have a huge impact on the future of cannabis policy in Illinois. Now is the time for voters who support a better path for Illinois to make their voice heard.

 

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