Legalizing Medical Marijuana On Deck In 2016

SOUTH CAROLINA:  Because she has seizures every day and slams into the ground, 18-year-old Dixie Pace has worn a helmet since November.

Pace uses cannabidiol oil, an oil derived from marijuana that was legalized in South Carolina last year for certain forms of epilepsy, to reduce her seizures from 50 down to an average of less than 10 a day.

“That’s just one oil,” Pace’s mother, April Pace, said Wednesday during a State House rally, urging the Legislature to legalize medical marijuana. April Pace says access to a different oil extracted from marijuana, or the plant itself, could control further — or possibly stop — Dixie Pace’s seizures.

Earlier Wednesday, April Pace testified to a panel of state senators considering a bill to allow the use of marijuana to treat certain medical conditions.

 

NC House Panel Rejects Proposal For Medical Marijuana

NORTH CAROLINA:  A state House committee unanimously rejected a proposal to legalize medical marijuana after an emotional hourlong hearing that ended with a legislator saying he was assaulted by a marijuana advocate.

House Bill 78 marks the most progress any marijuana proposal has had in the N.C. General Assembly. Two years ago, a similar bill was directed to the House Rules Committee, where Republican leaders allowed four people to speak before cutting off discussion and killing the bill.

Wednesday’s hearing took place in the more prominent House Judiciary I Committee, and more than a dozen people spoke about the proposal in a packed meeting room. “For those in the room speaking today, this is huge – that you’re even here allowed to speak before the Judiciary I Committee,” said Rep. Becky Carney, a Charlotte Democrat who co-sponsored the bill. “That’s a big step. It’s not a defeat.”

Senate Passes Medical Marijuana Bill

GEORGIA:  A two-year effort to legalize medical marijuana in Georgia may finally succeed, as the Senate passed a likely compromise that would OK a limited form of the drug for disorders including cancer, seizures and sickle cell disease.

House Bill 1 still needs another nod from the House before it receives final passage. But by beating back efforts from the chamber’s conservatives to gut the bill on the floor, Senate supporters have handed over legislation likely to make that happen — especially since it is already supported by the bill’s sponsor, state Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon.

The compromise was made last week, after Senate Health and Human Services Chairwoman Renee Unterman, R-Buford, rewrote HB 1 as a way to merge a restrictive medical marijuana measure already approved in the Senate and a much broader effort already approved by the House.

Voters To Decide Pot Issue In Michigan, Across Country

MICHIGAN:  Tuesday’s election is the first in Michigan and first across the nation to reflect a widespread movement in the change of attitudes on the issue of legalizing marijuana.

Residents will vote on ballot measures to significantly amend marijuana laws in four states — Alaska, California, Florida and Oregon — as well as in Washington, D.C., and numerous cities and counties around the country.

In politics, as in so many other things, the rule is: Follow the money.

“This is the first election ever when people with big money are getting involved with pro-marijuana candidates and the ballot issues” to legalize medical marijuana, said Chuck Ream, 67, of Ann Arbor.