Thursday, May 25, 2017

Vermont governor vetoes cannabis legalization

Vermont governor vetoes marijuana legalization | TheHill - Reid Wilson:

May 24, 2017 - "Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) has vetoed legislation that would have legalized marijuana for recreational use.... Scott told reporters during a press conference Wednesday that ... he would ask the legislature to make changes to the bill.

"'I’m not philosophically opposed to ending the prohibition on marijuana,' Scott said, according to local news outlets.

"Vermont legislators are unlikely to override Scott’s veto of the measure, which passed by only a narrow margin.

"Legalization advocates took solace in Scott’s comments, which they said could lead to a new bill as early as July.

"'We are disappointed by the governor’s decision to veto this widely supported legislation, but we are very encouraged by the governor’s offer to work with legislators to pass a legalization bill during the summer veto session,' said Matt Simon, a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project. 'Lawmakers have an opportunity to address the governor’s concerns and pass a revised bill this summer, and we are excited about its prospects.'

"The Vermont legislature's passage of the bill was a landmark moment in the growing trend toward loosening marijuana laws. The state's lawmakers were the first in the nation to send a bill legalizing pot to a governor’s desk. The other eight states where marijuana is legal all passed their measures through citizen initiatives."

"'The fact that a bill even ended up on the governor's desk signals a new phase of the marijuana legalization movement,' said Tom Angell, founder of the pro-legalization group Marijuana Majority. 'Our momentum has now reached a point where the issue has become so popular with voters at the ballot box that more politicians are feeling comfortable enough to grapple with it themselves.'"

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