A key Republican lawmaker in Wisconsin – one of the few remaining states in the nation with no functional cannabis market – announced a new bill to stand up a medical marijuana industry.
According to the Associated Press, Speaker of the state Assembly Robin Vos said there will be a bill introduced in January, after the legislature reconvenes, that would allow for a very limited market, akin to the two-company medical model that Minnesota had prior to legalizing adult-use marijuana.
“We are not going to have dispensaries on every corner in every city,” Vos told the AP.
Vos said most of his caucus is on board in theory, but an actual bill draft has yet to be circulated, so it’s hard to gauge support and opposition.
“In concept, most people are there, but I don’t want to guarantee anything until we have a wider discussion,” Vos told the AP. “I feel pretty good that we’re in a place where I think it can get through our chamber.”
For year, Wisconsin Republicans have rejected any calls by Democrats and Gov. Tony Evers to legalize either medical or all marijuana, even as the state has watched while other Midwest states, including Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota and most recently Ohio, legalized commercial cannabis programs. Even neighboring Iowa has a limited MMJ market.
However, Senate Republicans may still be an obstacle, the AP reported, though the state Senate Majority Leader – another GOP stalwart – indicated a limited MMJ bill might be able to pass.