Even though evil men like Donald Trump and his Attorney general Jeff Sessions are against the use of recreational marijuana, the voices of the people are being heard loud and clear. State leaders are defying the voices of the racist president and the KKK supporting Attorney General. Instead the following six States are listening to the voices of the people and are on the verge of legalizing recreational marijuana.
Vermont needs legislative approval in order for adult use to become legal. The current bill can not move forward until the legislature reconvenes either later in 2017 or in January 2018, according to the Marijuana Policy Project. It needs passage by the House before Gov. Phil Scott could sign it.
The House did pass a similar bill earlier in 2017, “so there is little question that H. 511 will pass when it is brought to a vote,” the MPP said.
2. New Jersey
Many proponents of legalization are heartened by June’s gubernatorial primary elections in New Jersey. Democratic candidate Phil Murphy said in victory speech that “the criminalization of marijuana has only served to clog our courts and cloud people’s futures, so we will legalize marijuana … And while there are financial benefits, this is overwhelmingly about doing what is right and just.”
While the Republican winner, Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, is not in favor of legalization, in the past she has expressed opinions of decriminalizing marijuana and easing patient access to the medical marijuana program.
While Arizona voters defeated the measure last November, the ballot initiative in 2018 will likely be more inclusive, said Meltzer.
“In 2016, the ballot initiative came pretty close to passing,” said Meltzer. “Arizona has a good shot of passing it since public opinion has grown in support of medical and adult use.”
If Michigan voters approve the ballot initiative in November 2018, the state would legalize personal possession, cultivation, and use of cannabis for adults 21 and older, legalize the cultivation of industrial hemp, license marijuana businesses that cultivate, process, test, transport and sell marijuana and tax marijuana at retail levels with proceeds to support K-12 public schools, roads and local governments, according to the Marijuana Policy Project.
“The proponents of legalization think they have the votes,” said Meltzer.
Michigan’s medical program has been “decent, even though it is not as well regulated as we would like,” said Zucker. “I expect it to pass and it will be interesting to see how they transition.”
5. Rhode Island
Rhode Island is one of a few states that was expected to legalize adult use by now and even before Massachusetts approve it, said Meltzer. A 22-person commission on marijuana legalization is expected to report its findings in 2018.
“Rhode Island is playing it slow and could wait and see how it works in Massachusetts and be more cautious,” he said. “Massachusetts will provide a model for some Northeast states that want programs with a smaller footprint.”
The Regulate Rhode Island coalition has said their compromise of the current bill would “make up to an ounce of marijuana legal for adults ages 21 and older starting July 2018, when stores would open in Massachusetts. It would also create a small advisory board to study how Rhode Island could regulate and tax marijuana in the future.”
Rhode Island has a good medical cannabis program and should legalize it “pretty soon” since they are losing out on revenue and there is pressure from Massachusetts and Maine, said Zucker.
The state’s representatives proposed an amendment to another bill in June, according to the Marijuana Policy Project. While the issue did not receive a vote, prohibition could end this year because Connecticut Democrats in May released a budget proposal which included the regulation and taxation of cannabis similar to current laws for alcohol.
“Connecticut has a good chance of getting its legislation to go through and their polling numbers look good,” said Zucker. “Some other states that could pass adult use include Maryland, New Mexico and Delaware.”