The legalization of marijuana has been a hot topic as 11 states have legalized it’s use. However, there are still 33 states that have only legalized cannabis for medicinal purposes. What states could be next to legalize marijuana? What is the driving force behind a state making it legal?
What State Will Be First to Legalize Marijuana?
It’s fitting that Arizona is a runner up for legalizing marijuana. Although Arizona permits the use of cannabis for medical purposes, it has not legalized it for recreational use. There is another proposal in the works that will come to the forefront in 2010 This issue was on the ballot in 2016, and although it failed to pass it was a narrow margin.
Florida is another state that has its sights set on legalizing marijuana. Right now they are attempting to legalize medical cannabis, but many of the citizens would also like to see recreational marijuana become legal. Nearly 70% of the citizens from Florida are in favor of making marijuana legal. As it stands, they are the fastest growing market for medical cannabis in the United States. This could be the direct result of Florida making news over the last few years regarding its “pill mills”. The state made newspapers around the country with photos of long lines of individuals waiting to receive their prescriptions for narcotics.
Whether or not states have been deemed conservative in the past doesn’t seem to weigh in on this issue. Mississippi is one of the most conservative states, yet they are now in the running for legalizing recreational marijuana. Mississippi requires a specific number of signatures in order to put this on the ballot as a “initiated constitutional amendment”. This means that an amendment can be made when someone or a specific number of individuals choose to change it. The signatures needed totaled 86,185. Statements were published that the signatures were not submitted by the deadline. This deadline was October 12, 2018. If they can find another way around this, marijuana could be legalized.
The state of Nebraska doesn’t get much attention, but it could if marijuana becomes legalized for recreational purposes. The state legislature has been tough, voting the issue down three times and counting. Some changes are coming, and this means that next year, voters could be making the change rather than legislators. A specific number of signatures will be required in order for this issue to go to the ballot for 2020. The goal of getting the specified number of signatures would allow a constitutional amendment to be made. This would allow for the recreational use of cannabis, as well as the ability to sell cannabis.
Last but not least, New Jersey is one to watch. It seemed the stars were aligned to legalize marijuana, but at the end of March just hours before the vote was to be called something went terribly wrong. Andrew Cuomo wanted to call for a negotiation, but at the time it was too late.
New Jersey, Florida, and New York are the states to watch. Tax revenue continues to be the driving force behind why these states want it to be legalized. This is true for all states, as more and more individuals are scrambling to get their license to open their own dispensaries.
It’s making news that even those states which were anti-dispensary states now want to legalize marijuana for both medical purposes and for recreational use.