Governor Tate Reeves this week claimed that the medical Cannabis bill written by the Mississippi Legislature — itself a watered down version of an initiative approved by 74% of state voters last year — amounts to “recreational marijuana.”
The governor’s threatened veto haughtily defies the supermajority of Mississippians who voted for medicinal Cannabis in the Magnolia State. This is looking like Tate’s “let them eat cake” moment in the eyes of a misled Mississippi.
Reeves’ curt dismissal of the will of the people of the Magnolia State represents a startling display of political arrogance. The hubris of Mississippi’s ruling class has never been more openly displayed. We’re talking about a good old boy network of generations-old money. And this group imagines itself the inheritors of Mississippi’s vainglorious antebellum aristocracy.
The political calculation is, of course, that as long as Reeves and his ilk cater to working class voters by saying dumb and untrue things, and, of course, regularly and fervently smooching conservative savior Donald Trump’s ass, they’ll get away with anything. That particular method of crowd control, however, is strained to the breaking point by Tate’s latest patrician antics.
What The Hell Is He Even Talking About?
Reeves took to social media on Tuesday to yet again trumpet his regressive position on the medical marijuana bill.
“Given the wording, it would not be unreasonable to suggest that should lawmakers not acquiesce to the Governor’s position, the bill as proposed could face a veto,” the Northside Sun mildly puts it.
Reeves says the issue comes down to whether Mississippians want a true medical marijuana program or one that amounts to recreational use. For whatever benighted reason, Reeves just wants to make it clear that’s something he ain’t ever gonna support.
“Medicinal or Recreational marijuana? That is the question,” Reeves lied. “I’ve repeatedly told the members of the Legislature that I am willing to sign a bill that is truly medical marijuana. One that has reasonable restrictions to ensure that it doesn’t have an adverse effect on Mississippi’s economy. One that has reasonable restrictions to ensure that it doesn’t disrupt Mississippi families. A program that helps those Mississippians who truly need it for an illness.”
Now. Let’s just put Tate on hold for a second and point a couple things out here.
Letting seriously ill people have more than an eighth-ounce a day won’t “have an adverse effect” on any economy. And letting them have enough medicine won’t “disrupt families,” either. So, maybe, cut the bullshit on that tip, governor.
Gee Thanks, Mississippi Supreme Court… You Assholes
OK, flashback time. It’s just after the autocratic Mississippi Supreme Court ruling that deemed the initiative process flawed and struck down Initiative 65 from being implemented.
Governor Reeves said he would be willing to call the Legislature in for a special session to address the issue if he and lawmakers could agree on the parameters of the bill.
Senator Kevin Blackwell and Representative Lee Yancey took on the challenge in their respective chambers. They hammered out the details of a bill that was circulated to members. They then sent it to Reeves for his princely consideration.
The assumption was the votes were there to pass the negotiated bill. But Reeves claimed in a press conference that he heard from “a number of concerned legislators” who didn’t support it.
The translation of Tate’s bullshit is more like this: Maybe one or two backwoods bumpkins called, as opposed to the dozens in favor. One, after all, is “a number.”
Tate Thinks An Eighth A Day Is Too Much For Patients
Reeves refused sign on to the negotiated bill as, in his mind, it provided too much weed at any one time. After all, we just can’t trust these irresponsible sick people to know how much they need, now, can we?
The sticking point is the amount of Cannabis patients can get per day.
“Unlike any other drug, this program allows virtually unlimited access to marijuana once you qualify,” Reeves lied. “There is no pharmacist involved and no doctor setting the amount. There is only what legislators call a ‘budtender’ serving you pot.”
(Now, hold your horses, Tate. That’s the way they do it back in civilization, son. Try as you might to make it sound scary, that mostly just makes you sound like a damned idiot. And a drama devotee.)
As currently written, the bill allows 3.5 grams per day, or 105 grams per month, reports WLOX. That’s 3.75 ounces.
Reeves just cannot STAND that the proposed bill allows qualified patients to get 3.5 grams of marijuana per day.
If lawmakers cut the amount in half like Reeves wants, it is down to 1.75 grams per day. That would be 52.5 grams in a 30-day period, which would be 1.875 ounces per month.
For comparison purposes, Mississippi’s next door neighbor, Arkansas, allows 2.5 ounces of usable flower every 14 days, reports WTOK. That’s more than 5 ounces a month, per patient, and Arkansas is doing just fine, thank you.
And Here We Go
The Misssippi Legislature will gavel in for its new session on January 5, 2022.
The Cannabis issue will move through the usual committee process and onto the floor assuming Governor Reeves does not call a special session during the regular session to handle this specific bill.
What we don’t know yet, reports Marijuana Moment, is if lawmakers make the additional change on purchase limits. They could push ahead with their current plan and risk a gubernatorial veto.