The legalization of medical marijuana moved a step closer to reality in Connecticut after a Wednesday vote by the State House of Representatives.
The House voted 96 to 51 to pass a bill that would legalize medical marijuana in the state following an afternoon of debate and a last-minute attempt by opponents to block it. If the legislation clears the Senate, Gov. Dannel Malloy has said he will sign it.
Under the bill, patients suffering from certain illnesses like AIDS or cancer could obtain a one-month supply of marijuana for medical use with a doctor’s permission. The bill would also license and regulate medical marijuana producers.
Previously, in 2007, the Connecticut General Assembly approved a medical marijuana bill, but it was vetoed by then Republican governor M. Jodi Rell. Since the election of Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy in 2010, who has proven to be much more supportive of marijuana reform, there has been a renewed push to get the state to legalize medical marijuana. Last year Malloy actively supported and then signed into law a bill significantly reducing the penalties for marijuana possession.
Now that this medical marijuana bill has cleared the House, it heads to the slightly more conservative state senate. Indications are that the bill stands a good chance of winning approval there before the legislative session is up.
There is a good chance that in the near future Connecticut will become the 17th state to adopt medical marijuana.