New York May Be Next in Line to Legalize Medical Marijuana

New Jersey’s passage of a bill legalizing medical marijuana brought new hope to dope in New York State.

The New York Assembly’s Committe on Health passed a similar bill Tuesday morning, paving the way for an eventual vote on the Assembly floor.

Manhattan Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, who has unsuccessfully sponsored the medicinal marijuana legalization bill for the past 12 years, is optimistic that this year things might be different.

“Every time a state approves a medical marijuana law, it helps advance the issue every where else,” the Assemblyman said. “The fact that New Jersey is our neighboring state will be very helpful.”

New Jersey is primed to become the 14th state to legalize marijuana for medicinal use. The Garden State’s medical marijuana bill passed in the state Assembly and Senate and is expected to be signed into law by Gov. Jon Corzine before he leaves office on Jan. 19.

Gottfried expects the New York bill to reach the Assembly floor within the month. He believes that the bill will face a greater challenge when it advances to the Senate, where there is a virtual split between Democrats — who traditionally look more favorably on medical marijuana usage — and Republicans.

“I think the problem is that elected officials are extremely wary of doing anything that anybody might think means that they are ‘soft on drugs’,” Gottfried said.

Like the New Jersey bill, New York’s bill would require that marijuana retailers be licensed by the state, and would forbid people from growing it at home.

Daniel J. O’Donnell, another Manhattan Assembly Member, co-sponsored the Assembly bill with Gottfried.

“I am hopeful that New York will soon join New Jersey and the thirteen other states that allow the medical use of marijuana,” O’Donnell said in e-mailed comments. “The thousands of New Yorkers currently struggling with chronic medical conditions deserve this relief.”

“It is just outrageous that we deny this relief,” Gottfried said, adding that he was envious that the New Jersey legislature was able to pass the bill.

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  1. Anonymous on

    I’m sorry, but people need to wake up and address the issue of not being permitted to grow it at home. It is almost worse than having it illegal altogether. With taxation and regulation, who is going to be able to afford to buy and you know damn well that the penalties for growing at home will be way worse than what we are seeing now. This may not be the case right now, but once these laws pass, the government can easily decide to become tougher on unlicensed growers.

    All in all, I think the DEA is letting these bills pass so easily because they are still going to be able to continue their very lucrative drug war, just with different rules. People in New York state, let your officials know that unless patients can safely grow their own, or can at least guarantee that people will be able to afford taxed and regulated cannabis, they can stick their bill up their ass.

    Can’t you people see this is NOT a step forward, it is ust a pulling of the wool over the eyes of the public.

  2. Freedom. on

    When one state does something many times their neighbors do to. Take Illinois and Iowa, some time back Iowa started raising taxes on cigarttes. People started to go to Illinos to buy, but not in nubers so big It hurt Iowa so bad. Illinois seen Iowa was raking in taxes , so they rasied taxes to.

    This can also work for MMJ. Once neighboring states see the benifits, they most likely will follow suit.How many would move to a nieghboring state if they thought they could get legal,cannabis? How many states would realize they are losing tax payers? how many would legalize MMJ to keep thier tax payers in a harsh economy? Bean counters will win this for us.

  3. Anonymous on

    I have been smoking pot excessively everyday since 1962.

    I just had a procedure to look in my lungs with a camera…the one thru the nose into the lung with a camera looking for a mass that was found on a C T scan. Turns out the mass was water and eventually evaporated.

    I asked the Dr how my lungs looked after all my consumption and he said they had no blackness or scaring and looked pretty healthy…..he also had a reply when I told him I smoked Marijuana…..he asked if it was Medical Marijuana?

    Would you trust this Dr.?

    He graduated from Loma Linda U where Jesus is more important than You!


  4. Anonymous on

    “”I think the problem is that elected officials are extremely wary of doing anything that anybody might think means that they are ‘soft on drugs’,” Gottfried said.””

    this is the whole problem right there if u support medical marijuana u are soft on crime how these are related is unknown, but yet this is the conservative governments ammo!