Two Republican legislators in Tennessee have introduced a new medical marijuana bill, according to a Dec. 14, 2016, article in The Tennessean.
At a Dec. 14, 2016, public announcement that included supporting comments from singer and songwriter Gary Chapman, Rep. Jeremy Faison and Sen. Steve Dickerson insisted their bill was not opening the door to adult-use marijuana.
Previously attempts to legalize medical marijuana in the state have failed, but sponsors believe this bill is a more concerted effort.
Although Faison and Dickerson are Republicans, Tennessee’s Republican-dominated General Assembly might not be fertile territory for a medical marijuana bill. House Majority Leader Rep. Glen Casada is a likely opponent, The Tennessean reported.
But Dickerson suggested the medical marijuana bill could appeal to small-government sensibilities in the GOP.
“At its heart, I really do think this is a very Republican, conservative bill,” Dickerson said. “I know that’s a little counterintuitive, but it gets the government out of our lives.”
Reinforcing his insistence that medical marijuana would not be a pathway to legalized recreational use, Faison said a trip he took to Colorado convinced him the state eventually will repeal its adult-use law.
Dickerson, who is also a doctor, said, “What this bill is not is opening the door to recreational use; this is not a bill that will allow people to get high on the streets. This is, however, a bill that would bring a necessary medicine to some of the sickest and most critically ill Tennesseans.”