Legislators From States With Legalized Marijuana Push Back on Federal Crackdown
Legislators from states that have legalized marijuana are pushing back against a federal crackdown on the drug, led by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said this week that it is unlikely the state legislature will take up the issue of medical marijuana this year. He added the risks of legalizing marijuana for pain relief require more study.
Legislators in the state House and Senate are drafting a medical marijuana bill, in an effort to get New York to join 16 other states that have passed laws allowing people with serious illnesses to buy and possess small amounts of the drug, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Governor Cuomo said that while he understands the benefits of medical marijuana, he thinks the risks outweigh them at this point. He noted he did not think there would be time for a medical marijuana bill to make it onto the agenda this year, before the legislative session ends in late June.
Some lawmakers disagreed. “We’ve done much more complicated legislation in much less time,” said Richard Gottfried, Chairman of the Assembly Health Committee, who is expected to introduce a new bill in coming weeks. “I think he would find that it’s something we could easily get done this year.”