New Jersey News
New Jersey News
Two weeks ago, the New Hampshire House passed SB 409, and yesterday, the Senate committees agreed on its terms and language. But with Gov. John Lynch promising that he'll veto the bill, is New Hampshire headed for a showdown?
Lynch says that he is concerned for the lack of control over marijuana distribution in the bill, according to Boston.com. The bill, SB 409, allows for patients and caregivers to cultivate marijuana in a registered location, and possess up to six ounces of marijuana, four mature plants and 12 seedlings.
Today, a Republican-led New Hampshire House voted in favor of legalizing medical marijuana within the state. The wide-margin win is a relief to proponents of the program, who still have a long road until legalization is possible.
The House's 236-96 supermajority in favor of SB 409 sets a similar stage to the legalization bill in 2009, which enjoyed a large House victory but ended in veto after the Senate passed only 3 votes shy of the necessary three-fifths to override it.
Governor John Lynch has made it clear (as recently as Tuesday) that he will veto any bill having to do with medical marijuana, so if the Senate comes up short again when it votes, medical marijuana will have to wait another year.
The NH House passed a bill to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana today. Votes were close: 162-161. The House also killed another bill (overwhelmingly, 228-89) set to legalize and regulate marijuana.
Under the bill that passed, first offenses for possession under one half-ounce will receive a $250 ticket, with second offenses at $500. Further offenses will be a $1,000 fine with a possible year of jailtime. Offenders under 21 can be ordered to do a drug awareness program. This is a pleasant change for people with marijuana in their pockets, who right now face a $2,000 fine and a year in jail.
The Republican Presidential candidates are in New Hampshire drumming up support, and the Students for a Sensible Drug Policy have been drilling them for answers on drug policy. Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was confronted by SSDP members, and essentially had no answers on the drug question - other than to check the non-existant discussion about it on his website.
If you've been following our other stories, we had recently reported Romney's inability to form a sentence about marijuana policy.
"Excuse me, governor, do you think the drug war is working," asked an SSDP member at Romney's January 9th Bedrock Rally. Romney took a few steps away, returned, and answered, "it's a long, long question...that deserves a full answer, and not just in a photo line like this. So come, look on my website. You'll see my answer."