Yesterday, a Minnesota Senate Committee overwhelmingly voted down a bill that would have legalized the commercial sale of marijuana in the state by a vote of 6-3. As the Senate now appears unwilling to address any further consideration of legalization, this means the effort to expand Big Marijuana in the state this year is dead.
“This is a great day for Minnesota,” said Dr. Kevin Sabet, president and CEO of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) and a former drug policy advisor to the Obama Administration. “Thanks to the efforts of our Minnesota affiliate, SAM MN, lawmakers were able to see through the lies perpetuated by the industry lobbyists and see the truth of what happens in states that legalize. They chose to side with public health, safety, and commonsense over allowing increased drugged driving deaths, dangerous youth exposure, normalization of drug use, and social justice harms to become the new norm in the North Star State.”
“Commonsense won the day with the defeat of this reckless bill,” said Kim Bemis, Chairman of SAM MN. “With the long list of ill effects seen from the handful of states that have went down the road of legalization, it is unfathomable that lawmakers would even consider it a possibility.”
“Legalization of marijuana and the high potency THC products it brings with it is not the way forward for Minnesota,” said Dr. Ken Winters, Co-Chair of SAM MN. “Thanks to the great effort from our coalition, we can sleep soundly knowing it has been defeated this year.”
Minnesota is now the second state so far this year to defeat a marijuana legalization proposal in the state legislature this year, joining Hawaii which voted down a bill last month. This continues the trend of no state enacting the commercialization of marijuana through the legislative process.
“The promoters of the marijuana industry will talk until they are blue in the face about legalization bills popping up around the country, but the fact is, when lawmakers take the time to hear the united voices of concerned citizens and study the consequences of legalization, they show the industry the door,” continued Dr. Sabet. “I am proud of the work our coalition has done in Minnesota.”