LAUREN KUMMER | NTV
LINCOLN, Neb. — 33 states have legalized medical marijuana and Nebraska is not one of them, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
In past years, medical marijuana has been a topic of discussion within the legislature, but this year specifically senators are more determined to legalize it.
The attorney general isn’t convinced legalization would help the cornhusker state.
Senator Adam Morfeld said he’s received calls, texts, emails and even letters from families who would benefit from the legalization of medical marijuana.
“There’s a lot of different ailments, chronic diseases and chronic pain where marijuana has been shown to have a positive impact. Quite frankly doctors and Nebraskans should be able to have that choice,” said Morfeld.
Attorney General Doug Peterson doesn’t agree.
“It’s an industry. Some say medical marijuana, I almost don’t even accept that title because I understand that this comes from an industry that really has no medical concern. There are investors who are concerned in expanding the markets to make billions of dollars,” said Peterson.
Some legislators pushing for legalization don’t see it that way.
“Doctors have said that this will help with chronic pain in a non-addictive manor. Everything from seizures to autism to arthritis to just basic pain control and a management,” said Morfeld.
“Truth and fact is it’s not medicine. Had it been medicine, it would be completely vetted through the medical process. I’m okay if they start doing all kinds of studies and find limited purposes. Then prescribe it through doctors, get FDA approval, go through the proper chains of medicine but don’t buffalo us and say it’s “medical marijuana”,” said Peterson.
If passed, LB110 in the legislature currently would “adopt the medical cannabis act” legalizing medical marijuana.
Senator Adam Morfeld says the attorney general and governor should be taking this seriously because if this legislation isn’t passed, he and others will make it a ballot initiative.
“It’s got some of the most overwhelming support of any initiative I’ve ever seen in Nebraska in terms of polling and bipartisanship,” said Morfeld.
“My concern about this ballot issue is we have to fight against a machine, a profit driven machine. We have to get out there and tell people the truth about marijuana,” said Peterson.
Legislators say they’ve already submitted their language for a 2020 ballot initiative to make it a constitutional right if the bill doesn’t pass.