Lawmakers in Missouri won’t be required to toke before voting

Sadly, Rep. Andrew McDaniel’s amendment was defeated, but you can’t blame him for trying

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Sadly, it was defeated, but you can’t blame Rep. Andrew McDaniel (R) for trying.

On Thursday, lawmakers in the state of Missouri rejected an amendment to a health-care bill, stipulating that “members of the Missouri House shall consume a substantial dose of medicinal marijuana prior to entering the chamber or voting on any legislation.”

McDaniel has since said that his proposal wasn’t serious, and that he was trying to get his fellow representatives to “chill out”.

The bill itself—sponsored by Republican senator Mike Cierpiot—is more serious business. It includes a provision to ensure that registered cannabis patients would be protected from having their status reported to the federal government.

The bill states that “no state agency, including employees therein, shall disclose to the federal government, any federal government employee, or any unauthorized third party, the statewide list or any individual information of persons who have applied for or obtained a medical marijuana card.”

In Missouri, cannabis is illegal but decriminalized. Thanks to a ballot initiative to amend the state constitution, medical use was legalized in 2018. Qualified patients are allowed to grow up to six cannabis plants and purchase at least four ounces of cannabis per month.

Last month, activists ended a campaign to legalize cannabis in the state due to the coronavirus pandemic, stating that there was no practical way to collect enough signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

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