That is not to say that opponents of the bill were wholly unsuccessful. The bill that passed was a watered-down version of a more robust bill that included whole plant cannabis; the bill the state Senate approved does contain the use of THC, so at least it’s not a “CBD-only” bill. A CBD bill is also making its way through the Utah Legislature.
The “refined” medical cannabis bill now goes to the state House, where its fate is completely unknown.
“I hope that we will act today, not out of fear, but out of hope and out of compassion and out of a belief that people do have a right to make decisions about their own care and that government doesn’t always get it right,” said Senator Mark Madsen (R), the sponsor of the bill, before the vote.
Despite the watered-down nature of the bill, any objective person has to admit that any kind of cannabis legalization in Utah is quite a feat. When you think about “red” states, Utah is at the top of the list. And now, not only has the conversation been started, concrete results are being gained.
The recent changes in the bill – SB 73 – made it more palatable to some on the fence, and caused The Mormon Church to soften their vocal opposition. The bill would still put in place legal protections for qualified patients and allow for grow sites and dispensaries.
Sadly, the amazing medical capabilities of cannabis are needed by people in all 50 states, but access varies wildly from state to state for people who have the exact same illness. Someone with Crohn’s Disease will fair much better when it comes to medicinal marijuana in California than they will in Kansas.
Yet if you need a prescription for a dangerous and addictive pill filled, you’re good pretty much anywhere in the U.S.