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A local FOX affiliate in Salt Lake City has video of an anti-medical marijuana canvasser lying to voters. Opponents of the Utah Medical Marijuana initiative on the November ballot are trying to remove it by convincing petition signers to officially remove their signatures. In the video, the opponent, who claims to be from the Utah Medical Association, tries to convince a voter that passing medical marijuana would actually reduce access to cannabis in Utah. [CANVASSER CLIP: “Currently, without this being passed, you can just get a recommendation from your personal physician, whatever it is, and you can’t be prosecuted.” VOTER: “Currently in Utah, you can’t get a recommendation from anybody.” CANVASSER: “You can get a recommendation, you can.”] Currently, only CBD oil is legal in Utah, and only for intractable epilepsy, not “whatever it is.” The canvasser claims that the language of the initiative secretly changed from what the voter signed just three weeks prior. [VOTER CLIP: “OK, so they changed it before I signed it, and yet the petition still went out with the original information?” CANVASSER: “Right, because they had the right to do that as the state.”] Utah Medical Association denies that the canvasser was one of theirs.
Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal signed into law Monday an expansion of the state’s CBD oil law. Under the measure, post-traumatic stress and intractable pain now qualify for use of what the state refers to as “low THC oil,” which is cannabis oil containing no more than 5 percent THC. Patients in need of the oil can sign up with the Georgia Department of Health for a registry card that allows possession of up to 20 ounces of the oil. However, there is no legal means of manufacturing or acquiring the oil; the law simply protects those who possess it if they have broken numerous state and federal drug laws to smuggle it into Georgia.
Guy Cecil, chair of Democratic super PAC Priorities USA, is optimistic about the effect of marijuana reform measures on the ballot. [CECIL CLIP: “I don’t think there’s any question that in the places where we have seen legalization on the ballot that it has increased interest in the election on the part of young voters in particular, that it’s increased turnout in those states.”] Cecil made his remarks on an appearance on C-Span, including a sideways approval of legalization for non-political reasons. [CECIL CLIP: “That’s not the reason somebody should be for it, but I certainly think it’s a winner in terms of just the pure politics of it.”] Cecil’s comments echo sentiments expressed by Bill Maher for his 4/20 show on HBO. [MAHER CLIP: “Yes, we love weed the way Republicans love their guns. Every election they run on ‘they’re coming for your guns!’ We need to talk about weed that way and turn potheads into single issue voters, too.”]
The Missouri Assembly is one step closer to passing a medical marijuana law. The Missouri Senate’s Committee on Health and Pensions has received the bill for a second reading. Should it pass there, it would go to the full Senate, then to the governor. Republican lobbyists are pushing the bill as a fulfillment of President Trump’s support of medical marijuana, hoping that entices the Republican-controlled body to pass the bill and undercut the chances of three more liberal medical marijuana initiatives that could be on the Missouri ballot, helping the political chances for Democrats. The legislature’s bill forbids home cultivation and smoking of cannabis, while all three initiatives allow smoking and one, New Approach Missouri, allows home cultivation.
The acting administrator of the DEA testified before Congress and made a shocking claim about marijuana. Administrator Robert Patterson was responding to a question from Congressman Hank Johnson of Georgia about what percentage of drug overdose deaths in 2016 were attributable to marijuana, as compared to the 44,000 attributable to opioids. [PATTERSON CLIP: “I am aware of a few deaths from marijuana.” JOHNSON: “You are aware of a few deaths from overdosing on marijuana?” PATTERSON: “I don’t recall if it was overdosing, but deaths attributed to the use of marijuana.”] When pressed by Johnson, Patterson suggested that some deaths may be a result of adulteration but conceded Johnson’s larger point. [PATTERSON CLIP: “I understand the issue here, which is one’s not comparable to the other, I think, is what you’re asking me.”]