In turnaround, Pennsylvania governor exploring adult-use cannabis legalization

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf opened the door to legalizing recreational marijuana in one of the nation’s most populous states with the announcement that a series of town hall-style sessions will be held on the issue.

The two-term Democratic governor, a former opponent of adult use, recently changed his tune, saying the state should take a serious look at it. In doing so, he’s acknowledging how legalization talk is beginning to spread across the Northeast.

Pennsylvania would represent a potentially huge new market for cannabis entrepreneurs, although rec legalization would face key political hurdles in the state.

Based on Pennsylvania’s population, the state would be expected to generate well in excess of $1 billion a year in rec sales when fully implemented.

Wolf said gauging opinion is the responsible thing to do as states increasingly legalize marijuana or, in the case of nearby New Jersey and New York, strongly consider it. A similar tour in his first term on the opioid-addiction epidemic proved valuable to crafting state policy, he said.

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, an advocate of legalizing recreational use, will hold a listening session in each of the state’s 67 counties in the coming months.

Wolf signed Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana law in 2016 and has overseen the program’s launch and strong growth. In December, the state said it would issue 23 additional MMJ permits.

But a Republican-controlled Legislature could pose a big obstacle to legalization.

While lawmakers overwhelmingly approved Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program, the Legislature has been hostile to the idea of legalizing recreational use.

Just last month, Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman criticized marijuana as a “gateway drug.”

– Associated Press and Marijuana Business Daily

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6 comments on “In turnaround, Pennsylvania governor exploring adult-use cannabis legalization
  1. John A Verkitus on

    I am sorry, but cannabis is NOT a Gateway drug. It is a Medicinal PLANT that has been used SAFELY for Thousands of Years!

    Jake Corman needs to get his facts straight and get with the Public who Want this Legalized.. The Polling shows the Majority of people, over 66% are in favor of legalization and regulation like alcohol..

    Not to mention the HUGE tax dollars which will be generated and also Thousands of JOBS and New Businesses created by legalization.

    It is a WIN- WIN for both the PEOPLE and the Government of PA and the USA…

    • Larry on

      I agree and the sooner some of these politicians wake up and stop calling it a gateway drug, the better off we will be. It’s a myth…..

    • jack fetch on

      JAKE CORMAN has the mindset of 50 yrs ago when they tried to tell the public thru the now infamous ridiculous movie REEFER MADNESS the pot was dangerous.. it became a cult comedy.. if anything back then kids tried it.. remember it was the sixties early seventies Woodstock era.. they discovered they were lied to about pot.. that led to experimentation with lsd mescaline mushrooms, etc.. the psychodelics.. but not heroin or meth.. I know from personal experience.. I saw my friends having a lot of fun while they were stoned in college.. I was curious I gave it a try.. that was 51 yrs ago.. I only did it socially with friends from all walks of life. teachers, drs, lawyers. u name it.. now I have medical marijuana i stopped drinking a few yrs ago. rather have a few hits of good pot and a diet mountain dew.. no hangover and still a lot of fun.. i dont care what anyone says ,, i will be 68 this year.. every politician should at least try a gummy bear, or any product before they give an opinion.. how can they judge on heresay. its certainly not for kids i agree, should be governed like alcohol..

  2. jim damiano on

    I never tried other drugs as a youth when I smoked pot those days are long behind me but if you ask any smoker they will tell you the euphoric feeling is enough I am retired now so ii won’t smoke for my lungs sake but I am going to try edibles

  3. Adan Torres on

    Legalize Recreational we want home grown for medical patients!! Cannabis is way to expensive and we get no medical coverage anyone over the age of 21 should be able to grow there own medicine… We need to catch up on the cannabis laws we are way behind compared to all the other states which makes us look stupid. You guys are over regulating cannabis. Cannabis should be treated just how any OTC medicine should. But instead we go to jail for curing ourself with the plant. Tobacco and alcohol is way more dangerous than cannabis. All these people died under the influence of alcohol and use of tobacco. Not one person has died using cannabis it just doesn’t make any sense. PA needs to get it together seriously!

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