LDS Church Opposes Medical Marijuana in Utah


In Utah, the fight for medical marijuana just got a little more complicated. On Feb. 5, 2016, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued a statement to the Salt Lake Tribune, officially opposing SB 73, a bill that would legalize medical marijuana in the state.

“Along with others, we have expressed concern about the unintended consequences that may accompany the legalization of medical marijuana,” said Eric Hawkins, a spokesman for the church, in the statement. “We have expressed opposition to Senator Madsen’s bill because of that concern.”

Despite opposition from the LDS Church, which still holds some sway over politics in the state, lawmakers supporting the bill believe that the bill could pass. Also speaking with the Salt Lake Tribune, Senate Majority Leader Ralph Okerlund said that most minds were already made up due to debate over a similar bill last session and that the “floor debate may swing it one way or the other.”

William Sumner, a freelance writer and marijuana journalist, was a staff writer for MJINews from May 2014 through February 2018. You can follow him on Twitter @W_Sumner.

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