TENNESSEE MEDICAL CANNABIS ACT OVERCOMES POTENTIAL EARLY OBSTACLE
By Montgomery Michael
It looks as if medicinal cannabis has the potential to be coming to Tennessee. Tennessee is one of the 20 states in the U.S. that does not have a medical marijuana program.
Thanks to the Tennessee State House of Representatives and its' proposed medical cannabis legislation, patients' access to the medicine might be a step closer to a reality. Of course that depends on the progression of the bill through the legislative process in the state. But after the proposed legislation cleared a potential obstacle by one vote in the House Criminal Justice Subcommittee, the person who broke the tie had this to say:
“I am supportive of the legislation, and felt that it deserved a hearing in the full committee. A wider discussion of this issue is warranted, and for that to happen, it needed to advance. I appreciate the hard work Rep. Faison and others have put into this legislation, which I think is a very thoughtful approach. It is a regulated approach that does not allow smoking, and I believe it can be helpful to countless Tennesseans.”
That person was Republican House Speaker Beth Harwell, who tipped the vote 4-3 in favor of moving forward the proposed legislation to the full Committee, as Joel Ebert reports in his article for the Tennessean.com..
Speaker Harwell made the above statement to Good People News, regarding her support for House Bill 1749 (Medical Cannabis Act), and her decision to break the tie in the House subcommittee to advance the legislation.
A main reason for the support was the idea of health safety involved with medical marijuana. Ebert quoted the bill's co-sponsor Representative Jeremy Faison (R) as saying " Not one single person in America has died accidentally using medical grade cannabis". Regarding the likelihood of the bill's passage, Faison said " I believe there is a path to the finish line in the House and the Senate but it's one step at a time," according to Ebert.
Steps are being taken all over the United States, and Tennessee's legislature is debating the pros and cons of an important issue effecting both health care and criminal justice. These are two areas that Tennessee legislature are tackling head on, as evidenced by Speaker Harwell's swing vote to keep the conversation moving.