Status of MN Legalization Bill — March 21, 2023

Are you wondering if the MN legislature will get it done? Are they going to “Legalize Cannabis” this year? Are we close? How close?
These are the questions . . . but it’s too soon to be certain about the outcome.
To change our existing laws, the legislators have to pass a bill in the Senate and a bill in the House; then the two bills have to be combined into one identical version, and that has to be re-passed. THEN it goes to the Governor, who must sign the bill to make officially into a new law.
Grassroots members have been attending many of the committee hearings at the Capitol and State Buildings in St.Paul.
In the State Senate, Senate File 73 has been heard by 11 committees, but there are several more to go. In the House of Representatives, House File 100 has been heard by 14 committees, and isn’t done yet.
Obviously these are complicated bills–hundreds of pages long–thsat’s why so many different committees are involved. The bill could be scuttled–stopped in its tracks–anywhere along the way. Or, the bill could be amended, to make it a better law, or else to water it down or weaken it.
From our point of view, it’s not a very good bill to begin with. The people who put it together have ignored the basic law of our state, the MN Constitution, which has a provision recognizing the right to sell or peddle the product of a farm or garden WITHOUT being required to obtain a license. But this bill has FOURTEEN types of licenses and an absurd, Rube-Golberg-type of Bureaucratic regulation written into it.
All that an objective onlooker can say is that it seems to be better than outright Prohibition–but really it is setting up a “Prohibition Lite” system and calling it “legalization.”
And within the past few days, the bill has been amended to significantly alter its proposed structure for “legally regulated” psychoactive cannabis. This latest amendment is about 100 pages long, and what we have seen of it so far looks more like special-interest lawmaking than like a genuine reform that would restore our rights and serve the cause of justice and human rights.
There is a reasonable old political proverb that says: “Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.” We all need to pay more attention as the legislative session continues. There are powerful forces trying hard to prevent Minnesota from ending prohibition, and there are also some advocates of ending prohibition whose motive is merely for the purpose of profiteering from the change.
If we can revive and reorganize the Grassroots Party, then there will be a voice for the ordinary citizens of our state, and leadership to defend our rights, to speak out for the victims of injustice, and to fight to create state laws reflecting the authentic spirit of cannabis liberation.

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