A state senator cautions opponents of medical marijuana that if the legislature doesn’t legalize it, voters likely will.
A bill to legalize medical marijuana is working its way through the legislature. The Judiciary Committee held a public hearing on Legislative Bill 110 in which backers testified marijuana could ease chronic pain and provide control over certain difficult medical conditions. Opponents argued not enough medical research has been done to back such claims and that legalization of medical marijuana will lead to legalization of recreational marijuana.
If the committee backs the measure, it goes to the full legislature for debate.
Sen. Adam Morfeld of Lincoln backs LB 110, stating lawmakers have an opportunity to approve a narrow bill with regulations designed to limit abuse.
“I’ll tell you what, if the senators don’t pass the legislation this year, the ballot initiative will not be narrow. It’ll be very broad,” Morfeld tells Nebraska Radio Network during an interview in his Capitol office. “And, that’s why senators and the Attorney General should be more productive and constructive in working with us on this.”
Sen. Anna Wishart of Lincoln sponsors LB 110, but has a back-up plan. She and Morfeld are co-sponsors of a petition drive ready to take the issue to the ballot if the legislature blocks it.
Morfeld claims the opposition from Gov. Pete Ricketts, Attorney General Peterson, to some in the legislature could prove counter-productive.
“The bottom line is that eventually the Attorney General and other state senators are going to wish that they worked with us, because once this gets on the ballot, it’s flying through,” Morfeld says. “Nebraskans overwhelmingly support medical marijuana being legalized and they’re going to regret not working with us.”
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]