Republican lawmakers in southern states are reportedly contemplating proposals that would allow the use of medical marijuana for very, very specific conditions. According to the AP, "this year powerful GOP lawmakers in Georgia and Alabama are putting their weight behind bills that would allow for the limited use of cannabis oil."
With medical marijuana now legal in 40 percent of American states (plus the District of Columbia), the notion that cannabis could make inroads into the backroads no longer seems quite so far-fetched. In the last month, we're covered the recent uptick in unlikely champions who've advocated for a loosening of different aspects of American marijuana policy.
In January, Texas Governor Rick Perry spoke of decriminalizing weed in Davos, President Obama confessed that he believes the drug is no more harmful than alcohol and even hinted at dropping opposition to legalization efforts. Last week, his deputy drug czar even offered that marijuana is less dangerous than alcohol or prescription drugs.
But can this rhetorical surge translate into future action? As of late last month, there are at least another ten states (not including Georgia, Alabama, and Indiana) that reportedly have ballot initiatives and house bills on the docket for this year that could legalize medical marijuana.
Earlier this week, Alabama took a step in that direction:
"The Senate Judiciary Committee approved by a 6-3 vote a bill known as Carly's Law which would allow people with certain illnesses to possess concentrated cannabis oil containing cannabidiol (CBD), a nonpsychoactive cannabinoid."
While this version of the drug has little-to-no THC (the part of cannabis that unleashes the dank), it seems noteworthy that the medical uses of marijuana are being explored, especially to help children with medical conditions.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.