Medical Marijuana

Texas Dept. of Public Safety Proposes Unworkable Regulations, Fee Increases

October 28th, 2016 No Comments Heather Fazio
Regulators at the Texas Department of Public Safety recently proposed outrageous amendments to their medical marijuana rules, including fees and reporting requirements would all but ensure the program could not operate.
Under the proposed rules, application and licensing fees for the first 24 months would go from $12,000 to over $2.25 million! While the Texas Department of Public Safety2pfubawj has presented a sensible approach to regulations until now, this shocking increase is simply unknown in any other medical marijuana state. The program, already limited to low-THC cannabis for seizure patients, simply couldn’t sustain its own burdensome costs. Critically, even if it could operate, patients could not afford the medical marijuana such an over-burdened system would produce.

In addition, cultivators would also be required to comply with federal laws related to interstate transport, despite the fact that all medical marijuana is federally illegal.

State bureaucrats should not be allowed to deny access to medical marijuana to patients they are supposed to help. If you are a Texas resident, please contact your lawmakers and other public officials and tell them not to support this outrageous fee.

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Medical Marijuana

Arkansas Supreme Court Disqualifies Medical Marijuana Initiative

October 27th, 2016 No Comments Maggie Ellinger-Locke
Today, in a 5-2 ruling, the Arkansas Supreme Court granted a petition disqualifying Issue 7, the Arkansas Medical Cannabis Act, from the ballot. Meanwhile, early voting began on Monday in the state. Thus, the ruling robs the over 140,000 voters who have already cast their ballot of the opportunity to make a complete and informed decision. Despite the court’s ruling, Issue 7 will still physically appear on the ballot for the Tuesday, November 8 election. The campaign for Issue 7 urges Arkansans to vote yes on both Issues 6 and 7.ARCompassion logo

Issue 6 offers a more limited medical cannabis program, with fewer qualifying conditions and no grow-your-own provision for patients living far from a dispensary. However, the program offers seriously ill patients the only chance at relief if votes for Issue 7 do not count. Please locate your polling place here, and vote yes on both Issues 6 and 7. Before you head to the polls, be sure to check out MPP’s presidential voter guide as well.

MPP sends condolences to the many activists who spent long hours collecting signatures campaigning for Issue 7. We are disappointed with the court’s decision, and should the initiative seek further legal remedy, we wish the campaign the best. Right now it is critical that everyone urge their friends and family in Arkansas to vote yes on both medical marijuana initiatives.

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Research

Annual Gallup Poll Shows Record High Support for Making Marijuana Legal

October 19th, 2016 2 Comments Morgan Fox

Every year for nearly half a century, Gallup has conducted a poll to determine national support for making marijuana legal in the United States. The latest report shows the largest level of support in the history of the poll.

Gallup reports:

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(IMAGE: Gallup)

With voters in several states deciding this fall whether to legalize the use of marijuana, public support for making it legal has reached 60% — its highest level in Gallup’s 47-year trend.

Marijuana use is currently legal in four states and the District of Columbia, and legalization measures are on the ballot in five more — California, Arizona, Massachusetts, Maine and Nevada — this November. As a result, the percentage of Americans living in states where pot use is legal could rise from the current 5% to as much as 25% if all of these ballot measures pass.

When Gallup first asked this question in 1969, 12% of Americans supported the legalization of marijuana use. In the late 1970s, support rose to 28% but began to retreat in the 1980s during the era of the “Just Say No” to drugs campaign. Support stayed in the 25% range through 1995, but increased to 31% in 2000 and has continued climbing since then.

In 2013, support for legalization reached a majority for the first time after Washington and Colorado became the first states to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. Since then, a majority of Americans have continued to say they think the use of marijuana should be made legal.

A Pew Research Center poll released earlier in October showed national support at 57%, which was also a record for that survey.

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Prohibition

MPP’s Delaware Voter Guide

October 18th, 2016 No Comments Maggie Ellinger-Locke
The election is just three weeks away, and a number of Delaware legislative candidates are working hard to secure votes. If you are a Delaware residentcheck out our general election voter guide before you go to the polls so you know where contestants stand on marijuana law reform. We also have a one pager you can take with you to the polls.2000px-seal_of_delaware-svg
Just this week, the University of Delaware released a survey showing that 61% of Delawareans favor ending cannabis prohibition! Because Delaware does not have a voter initiative process — unlike the four states that have ended marijuana prohibition already, or the five states where voters are considering regulating marijuana like alcohol on Nov. 8 — it is critical that voters select elected officials that will effectively represent their views.
Be sure to review our state election guide before you exercise your civic duty. You can also check out our presidential voter guide here as well!
Delaware residents can also send an email to their current representative and senator and let him or her know that you want to see reform next session.

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Medical Marijuana

Florida Medical Marijuana Initiative Endorsed by National and State Epilepsy Foundations

October 18th, 2016 No Comments Marijuana Policy Project

United for Care, the Florida group campaigning to pass an effective medical marijuana ballot initiate on election day, recently announced endorsements from state and national epilepsy organizations.ef

Florida Politics reports:

The Florida Epilepsy Foundation has endorsed proposed Amendment 2, the medical marijuana initiative on Florida’s Nov. 8 ballot.

“Important medical decisions, such as treatments and medications, should be made by licensed physicians who know their patients best. That’s why the Epilepsy Foundation of Florida, along with the national Epilepsy Foundation, supports Amendment 2,” Karen Basha Egozi, chief executive officer of the organization, said Tuesday in a written statement.

“Florida’s epilepsy patients should have available whatever treatment options their doctors recommend, including medical marijuana,” she said.

The proposal would allow cannabis use by people “with debilitating medical conditions as determined by a licensed Florida physician.”

It provides legal protections for caregivers helping them administer the drug, subject to oversight by the state Department of Health.

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Research

MPP’s Pennsylvania Voter Guide

October 18th, 2016 1 Comment Marijuana Policy Project
Pennsylvania is one of the 26 states that lack a ballot initiative process, meaning the only way to improve statewide marijuana policies is to convince the state legislature to do so. With Election Day just weeks away, now is the time to help shape the makeup of the next General Assembly.2000px-seal_of_pennsylvania-svg
If you are a Pennsylvania resident, find out where candidates in your state House and state Senate districts stand on marijuana policy reform before you cast your votes on Tuesday, November 8:

1. If you’re not sure what state legislative districts you live in, click here.

2. Then, check out our voter guide to see where the candidates in your district stand.
We complied all incumbent candidates’ votes on medical marijuana, and sent all candidates a three-question survey on replacing jail time for marijuana possession with a civil fine; regulating marijuana like alcohol for adults’ use; and making it legal for adults to grow a limited amount of marijuana.
If candidates in your state legislative district didn’t answer our survey questions, you may want to reach out to them directly to ask where they stand. Please let us know if you get a response.

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Medical Marijuana, Research

MPP’s South Carolina Voter Guide

October 18th, 2016 No Comments Marijuana Policy Project
Medical marijuana patients in South Carolina remain criminals if they use a treatment option that is safer many prescriptions. Bipartisan lawmakers have proposed bringing a compassionate law to the Palmetto State, but the proposal was defeated in committee this year.Seal_of_South_Carolina.svg

If patients are to get the protections they deserve, they’ll need legislators who stand up for them. You can help make that happen.

If you are a South Carolina resident, find out where candidates in your state House and state Senate districts stand before you cast your votes on Tuesday, November 8.

1. If you’re not sure of what state legislative districts you live in, click here.

2. Then, check out our voter guide to see where the candidates in your state House and state Senate district stand on medical marijuana policy.
If we have no information on candidates in your district, that means they didn’t respond to our questionnaire. You may want to reach out to them directly to ask where they stand. Please let us know if you get a response.

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Medical Marijuana, Prohibition

MPP’s Nebraska Medical Marijuana Voter Guide

October 18th, 2016 No Comments Marijuana Policy Project
In March, Nebraska Sen. Tommy Garrett’s compassionate medical marijuana bill came a few votes shy of the super-majority needed to stop a filibuster.2000px-nebraska-stateseal-svg If patients are to get the protections they deserve next year, they’ll need legislators who stand up for them.
On November 8, half of the Nebraska Legislature is up for re-election.

1. If you’re not sure what state Senate district you live in, click here to find out. If your Senate district is an odd number, it’s on the ballot this year.

2. If you live in an odd-numbered Senate district, check out our voter guide see where the candidates in your district stand on allowing medical marijuana.

To compile our Nebraska voter guide, we reviewed the medical marijuana voting record of all incumbent senators who are running for re-election, and sent a questionnaire to all candidates. Unfortunately, only one candidate responded to our questionnaire. While they’re trying to earn votes, please consider reaching out to candidates in your district to let them know you want them to stand up for patients. The voter guide includes all candidates’ contact information.

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Prohibition

Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy Releases State Voter Guide

October 18th, 2016 No Comments Heather Fazio

To find out where Texas candidates for state senator and state representative stand on marijuana policy reform, we surveyed them, compiled their voting records, and put together a voter guide to make it easy for those of us who consider this issue a priority.s6v2cbfqzfoq695dmsrvg5zcwwvu9khspgdvm07hevsi-068qgifwmcxwibowjdbzh8pegs2048

There are two ways to view the results:

a. Enter your address and we’ll tell you which candidates are seeking your vote and where they stand on marijuana law reform.
a. This full-length document displays candidates’ responses to our survey, contact information for those who declined to respond, and incumbents’ voting records for the marijuana-related bills from last session.
This voter guide was compiled, published, and funded by members of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy, a broad coalition of organizations, activists, and community leaders dedicated to meaningful reform in Texas.
Texas NORML originated the guide in 2012, and we’d like to thank them for helping to put this year’s guide together.
Don’t forget: early voting starts in Texas on Oct. 24, and the general election will be held on Nov. 8!

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Prohibition

MPP’s New Hampshire Voter Guide

October 18th, 2016 No Comments Matt Simon
There has never been a more important opportunity to advance marijuana policy reform in New Hampshire than this year’s general election, which is now less than a month away. Granite Staters overwhelmingly support reforming marijuana laws, and MPP’s newly published voter guide shows that legislators and candidates are finally getting the message!Seal_of_New_Hampshire.svg
This year, for the first time in New Hampshire history, both major party candidates for governor — Democrat Colin Van Ostern and Republican Chris Sununu — have clearly stated their support for decriminalization. At this point, there does not appear to be a significant difference between Van Ostern and Sununu on marijuana policy, and either candidate would certainly be an upgrade over Gov. Maggie Hassan. A third candidate appearing on the ballot, Libertarian Max Abramson, supports legalization.
Even more exciting than the governor’s race is the prospect of improving the make-up of the state Senate, which has killed seven decriminalization bills since 2008. As the voter guide illustrates, several of the worst prohibitionist senators from last session are not seeking re-election, and many of the candidates seeking to replace them have much more enlightened positions on marijuana policy.
If you are a New Hampshire resident, please mark your calendar for Nov. 8, and share the voter guide with as many people as possible on Facebook and other social media platforms!

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