States Push Marijuana Legalization Bills Despite Opposition from the Federal Government

Lawmakers in about two dozen states have proposed bills this year to ease their marijuana laws despite Attorney General Jeff Sessions' warning that he could crack down on pot, a major change from the Obama administration, which essentially turned a blind eye to the state legislation.

Bills have been introduced in 17 states this year to make recreational pot legal for adults, while five others are considering voter referendums on the issue. Sixteen states have introduced medical marijuana legislation, 10 are considering decriminalizing the drug and three are considering easing their penalties. An effort in Wyoming to decriminalize the drug failed this session.


We Know Less About Marijuana Than We Think — Here Are the Biggest Mysteries Researchers Are Trying to Solve

  • Marijuana is easier to access than ever, with more than 20% of Americans living in a state that has voted to legalize recreational use — and a majority living in states that have legalized medical use.
  • But when you talk to researchers who study cannabis, they say there's still a lot we don't know about marijuana.
  • There are a few big studies happening right now that should for the first time offer some answers to essential questions.

In many ways, it's the age of access to pot.

As of last November, more than 20% of Americans live in states that have voted to legalize recreational marijuana use. A majority live in states that allow access to medical marijuana.


Wisconsin lawmakers take up cannabis oil seizure treatment bill

A bill to ensure anguished parents can get a child seizure treatment is finally moving forward in the Wisconsin Legislature.

Senators couldn't agree in the last legislative session on the proposal, which would have made it easier to get a drug that is derived from marijuana and used to treat children who suffer from severe seizures and have few other medical options.

The state took steps to provide very limited access to the drug three years ago but legal restrictions around it still dog families.


Wisconsin Senate overwhelmingly passes marijuana extract bill

The state Senate has overwhelmingly approved a bill that would make it legal to use a marijuana extract to treat seizures.

The measure legalizes possession of cannabidiol oil with a doctor's certification. The chamber adopted the bill on a 31-1 vote Wednesday. Republican Sen. Duey Stroebel was the only senator to vote against it.

Parents of children who suffer from seizures say cannabidiol oil, which doesn't produce a high, can ease symptoms.

Democratic Sen. Chris Larson argued the bill doesn't go far enough, pointing out that importing the oil into Wisconsin would remain illegal. He tried to amend the bill to allow production of the oil in the state but Republicans refused to revise the measure.

The bill goes next to the Assembly.


Wisconsin Democrats Introduce Bills Aimed at Legalizing Medical Marijuana

A pair of Democratic lawmakers hopes to move Wisconsin closer to legalizing medical marijuana with the introduction on Monday of two pieces of legislation. 

The first bill would legalize the use of medical marijuana for patients with qualifying conditions. The second would put the question to voters in the form of a nonbinding statewide referendum.

It is the hope of the bill's co-sponsors, Sen. Jon Erpenbach, D-Middleton, and Rep. Chris Taylor, D-Madison, that lawmakers who aren't inclined to support legalizing medicinal use of the drug might be supportive of having voters weigh in through a nonbinding referendum.

Neither proposal is likely to gain traction in the Republican-led Legislature, and Gov. Scott Walker does not support legalizing medical marijuana.


Wisconsin medical marijuana legalization gaining mainstream support

Medical marijuana use should be legal in Wisconsin.

Twenty-eight states — Arkansas, Florida, North Dakota and Ohio joined in November — and the District of Columbia allow for such use. California was the first to legalize medical marijuana 11 years ago.

There are signs that Wisconsin may eventually adopt that stance. Although Republicans in the state often have opposed such measures, The Associated Press reported that state Sen. Van Wanggaard, R-Racine, is circulating a bill that would make possessing a marijuana extract used to prevent seizures legal with a doctor’s certification.


Which States Will Legalize Marijuana Next? List Of East Coast States And More Considering Changing Pot Laws

The votes were counted, the oath was taken and Donald Trump became the 45th president of the United States Friday. However, a new president isn’t the only thing Americans received as a result of the 2016 election — a slew of citizens got sweet changes to marijuana laws after nine states legalized cannabis in some capacity.

With a new leader of the republic, there are bound to be changes ahead regarding many policies and practices in the U.S. Trump has already said the first of his executive orders would change immigration rules and Obamacare, and advance plans to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Meanwhile,  states where marijuana was legalized were beginning to structure and implement regulations.


Wisconsin Republicans reach deal on marijuana extract bill

Republican state senators have reached a deal on a proposal making it legal in Wisconsin to possess a marijuana extract used to treat seizures.

A similar bill failed to pass last session despite widespread bipartisan support when Republican senators derailed the proposal amid concerns it would open the door to legalizing marijuana.

Republican Sen. Leah Vukmir was one of those who opposed the measure, but her spokeswoman Jessica Ward said Thursday she has agreed on a new version and is working with Sen. Van Wanggaard on advancing it.

Wanggaard spokesman Scott Kelly said he is confident the measure will have enough support to pass. The bill is expected to be one of the first introduced this session.


Voters Love Medical Marijuana, But Doctors Are Still Skeptical

As voters legalize weed across the country, doctors groups still voice serious doubts about its medical value.

Voters in three states approved new medical marijuana initiatives on election day, and the majority of Americans now live in states where pot has been legalized in some form. But despite the growing public acceptance of medical marijuana laws, one group remains notably skeptical: doctors.


'The penalty is just so extreme, it's insane': Man on a mission to decriminalize marijuana in Wisconsin city


Ben Kollock was a kid when he learned an important life lesson from the cartoon character Captain Planet: If he sees an injustice in the world, he should do something about it.

Kollock sees an injustice in Stevens Point, and he’s following the lessons he learned from superheroes, the Stevens Point Journal reported. The 28-year-old wants the city to reform its policies surrounding marijuana possession to keep people caught with a small amount of the drug out of the criminal system.


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