New Hampshire may soon become the 19th U.S state to use marijuana for medical purposes.
The Senate approved the amended medical marijuana bill with 18-6 votes. Surprisingly, majority of the votes came from the Republicans. The scenario in the Congress was the opposite as most of the votes came from the Democrats.
However, there were some guidelines in the bill that were eliminated to make it more relevant to the patients of the state. The medical marijuana law was expected to follow the steps of California, Colorado, and Washington when it was first presented in the Congress.
Democrat Gov. Maggie Hassan said in an interview with Concord Monitor that she supports the legalization of medical marijuana use but would not want to have patients home-grow it. This was the same concern that the Senate had when they were discussing the bill which they decided to remove in the final draft.
The House and Senate might have a joint session anytime soon to settle the conflicting votes between parties. Those who were hoping that the bill will become a law are positive that the government will be able to settle the issue immediately.
Based on the records of the National Conference of State Legislatures, a non-government organization that works for the state legislatures, there are 18 states in the U.S that have legalized the medical use of marijuana. Patients suffering from serious pain, cancer, obesity, and other listed medical conditions will benefit from this bill once it becomes a law. The bill had made two attempts to pass the Senate but had always fail.
The Senate amended the bill that the House submitted to them. The changes made prohibit patients to plant marijuana in their garden, use the law as an excuse to avoid illicit charges, and use it to treat post-traumatic stress disorder.
The bill will be endorsed to the White House and is expected to become a law this 2013.