Kentucky Governor Says He May Use Executive Order if Medical Cannabis Bill Dies

With a medical cannabis bill on life support in the Kentucky general assembly, the state’s governor may take matters into his own hands.
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Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said Thursday that he is considering what he could do to rescue a proposal to legalize medical cannabis that is currently languishing in the state’s general assembly.

The first term Democrat was asked by reporters “if he could potentially issue an executive order making medical marijuana accessible if the bill dies,” the Associated Press reported.

“We’re going to explore that,” Beshear said, as quoted by the news outlet. “It’s something that we will look at. Its time has certainly come.”

Beshear’s comments came nearly a month after the Kentucky House of Representatives easily passed legislation that would legalize medical cannabis in the state for qualified patients.

That measure, sponsored by Republican state House Rep. Jason Nemes, would permit physicians to recommend cannabis treatment to patients with a host of qualifying conditions, such as cancer, chronic pain, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and nausea.

The bill passed the House, where the GOP holds a large majority, by a vote of 59-34.

In his efforts to build support for the bill, Nemes spoke of his experiences talking to patients and doctors.

“I’ll never forget this mother leaning forward and touching my hand. She told me what it meant to her child, and they all went around the room and said what it meant to them,” Nemes said. “And I thought, here’s good people, real good people, and I disagree with them. So, I was starting to question it. I talked to physicians, did a lot of research on the issue.”

But the bill has gone nowhere in the state Senate, which is also dominated by Republicans. It is a near identical scenario to 2020, when the Kentucky state House passed a medical cannabis bill only for it to be stymied in the state Senate.

Robert Stivers, the president of the Kentucky state Senate, was skeptical and dismissive of the bill from the start, saying that the legislature was running out of time to tackle legislation of that significance.

According to the Louisville Courier Journal, Stivers “remains opposed to legalizing medical marijuana, saying that while he’s seen research showing marijuana could have a positive effect on patients with spasticity, nausea and joint inflammation, he says those studies had small sample sizes and duration — while he’s seen others showing negative side effects.”

More recently, Stivers has expressed doubt that lawmakers have enough time to get the bill over the line, with the assembly’s 60-day session winding down.

On Thursday, Stivers said “it would be difficult” to pass the bill when lawmakers return for the final two days of the legislative session next week, according to the Associated Press.

The Associated Press reported that Stivers has “touted another pending bill that would create a cannabis research center at the University of Kentucky to study the use of cannabis to treat certain medical conditions.”

“Most definitely, I think there is that desire to help individuals,” Stivers said, as quoted by the Associated Press. “But with any drug, I think you need to have the full-blown studies.”

“That would give us the impetus to come back maybe within a year and say this is what marijuana could be used for or not be used for,” Stivers added, according to the Associated Press.

Enter Beshear, who has been forceful in his advocacy for legalizing medical cannabis in Kentucky.

While suggesting on Thursday that he may resort to executive action on the matter, Beshear once again urged lawmakers to deliver a bill to his desk.

“You see people from every part of every spectrum that are in favor of this,” Beshear said, as quoted by the Associated Press.

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5 comments
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  2. I think this is what the state needs is for us to go ahead and legalize marijuana in the state you can make a lot of money we can get out of a hole you can free up a lot of prison space for people who is convicted of marijuana you would have a lot of CPS off of peoples back there is more pros about marijuana than cons it helps you sleep when you have insomnia it helps you eat when you have no appetite it helps your back pain any kind of pain you have it’s better to have marijuana for the pain then to keep prescribing pills it’s a proven fact That it helps cancer patients from being sick and nausea helps him it takes the pain away and also in California they gave it to HIV patients I believe we should go ahead and legalize marijuana in Kentucky wash it we always be the last state to do anything it helps with depression PSTD And when you’re easy distracted and you smoke a joint you’re more focused

  3. It’s. Never going to happen until a Republican get elected as GoVor of Kentucky then he get 8 years instead of 4 but it should passed years ago I will move out of Kentucky to get help I’m single white free if Kentucky want give me what I need in my old Age move to Ohio and Kentucky bye in 20/22

  4. Legal medical marijuana and recreational marijuana in 20/22 use the GoVor power that what the power for when it not even voted on because it need more studythat makes no sence when 37 States and counting but not Kentucky that sad and should have to be legal our neighbors states can use medical marijuana but not Kentucky wTF🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙💙🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸

  5. Legal medical marijuana and recreational marijuana in 20/22 use the GoVor power that what the power for when it not even voted on because it need more studythat makes no sence when 37 States and counting Legal it in 20/22 Just Do It ASAP 😀😀😀😀😀🧡

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