Show-Me Cannabis may have decided to wait until 2016 for a ballot initiative but there's still a few possible bills floating around in the state legislature. Rep. Rory Ellinger of University City introduced two bills to the state house; HB 1324 to allow and establish rules for medical marijuana and its companion bill HB 1325 to decriminalize possession of marijuana for up to 35 grams, capping the allowable fine at $250 and guaranteeing that no one will face incarceration or the loss of their driver's license. Rep. Chris Kelly of Columbia introduced HB 1659 which legalizes recreational use by adults and sets guidelines for amounts of allowed possession and cultivation.
We found out which of those are more likely to pass when Missouri's Governor Jay Nixon was on State of the Union with Candy Crowley on Sunday. The show had the governors of Texas, Connecticut, Indiana, and Missouri on purportedly to talk minimum wage, Obamacare, and the death penalty. Crowley managed to smuggle in some marijuana talk by bringing up the tax revenue Colorado is receiving, though.
Crowley then added, "Can't imagine that marijuana use recreationally sells as legalizing in Missouri." To which Nixon responded, "Not so much," bringing about a round of laughter.
But then Gov. Nixon went on:
But medicinally, I think folks are beginning to see if there are things which the medical community can help on and has specific ways -- and I think our legislature and our people might consider that, but I think to move beyond that at this point is I would say a bridge too far but that bridge has not yet been built.
So it appears Nixon is not only acknowledging the existence of Rep. Ellinger's house bills, but is expressing openness to the idea. Medical marijuana may be in Missouri's not-too-distant future.