Georgia has traditionally shown a pretty strong stance against cannabis in general, favoring a limited compromise medical marijuana program and failing to pass any form of recreational cannabis.
Now, a recent poll shows that voters are in staunch opposition to the government’s approach to cannabis, and the majority of voters would prefer outright recreational legalization.
With the opinions of voters clearly laid out on the table, Georgia’s struggling medical marijuana program has been a disastrous tale of incompetence, greed, and possibly even corruption for nearly a decade now.
How legislators respond to the overwhelming majority will affect more than just votes, too, as lawmakers run the risk of easing their way out of public office and into public scrutiny for botching the medical marijuana program.
Many patients are left asking, if lawmakers choose recreational marijuana, what will happen to the stalled medical marijuana program?
Georgia Voters Want Recreational Marijuana, Medical Marijuana Still a Struggle for Officials
Poll Shows 80% in Favor of Recreational Marijuana for Georgia
A question concerning marijuana was recently added as one of the nine advisory inquiries on Georgia’s May 24 ballot.
The question asked: “Should marijuana be legalized, taxed, and regulated in the same manner as alcohol for adults 21 years of age or older, with proceeds going towards education, infrastructure, and health care programs?”
This is a clever way to demonstrably force two ideas together: Cannabis & cash.
The ballot question doesn’t just ask whether cannabis should be recreationally legal or not, it slyly adds the obligation that the State handle some of the green produced from America’s most profitable crop.
The question wasn’t open to interpretation either, it simply required a yes or no answer, and Georgia voters responded favorably to recreational marijuana with 80.4% yes and 19.54% no.
Poll Question Offers Little More Than Political Maneuverability
The question has no legal precedence, and there’s no direct outcome for the results of the poll.
Perhaps it’s a way for legislators to judge voter opinion, though that’s not exactly been behind most of the decisions regarding the medical marijuana program in Georgia, surely. Voters passed the medical marijuana program in 2015, and in 2022, 7 long years later, still no program, “low-THC oil” (CBD oil), or dispensaries.
Patients looking for effective medication elsewhere don’t have any legal protections, and the State has completely failed to resolve any of the legal obligations as of right now.
How voters answered the May 24 question likely offers lawmakers very little substance to make any meaningful changes, and probably serves its more suitable role as political ammunition for the future.
Regardless, voters have made their voices heard with the overwhelming majority favoring cannabis legalization, and the opinion piece says a lot more about Georgia’s medical cannabis ball-drop than any hearings or legislative action have offered so far.
Bills to Fix Georgia’s Medical Cannabis Program Fail to Pass
Lawsuits Over Licensing Still a Brick Wall for MMJ in Georgia
You could argue that the applicants who were denied cultivation licenses under a potentially corrosive and unfair agency is the biggest holdup for Georgia’s medical marijuana program, but it probably runs a little deeper than that.
The program started out its legislative journey as a watered-down compromise bill that offers a product that doesn’t even exist to a small list of people with chronic and terminal illnesses.
After some changes, the microscopic list of conditions was expanded to a small handful, though there’s still no “low-THC oil” that Georgia references in its program.
The oil, which is supposed to be cannabis oil that contains less than 5% THC, is simply CBD oil with 4.7% more THC than is allowed under the 2018 farm bill, a far cry from the medical marijuana products you’d find at traditional dispensaries.
Georgia’s Medical Marijuana Program Needs a Rewrite or Recreational Cannabis Needs to Pass
When Georgia moved to create an entire infrastructure based on an imaginary product, it failed to meet the obstacles of regulation that are tightly held in government agencies.
Beyond the potential for corruption, the program itself fails to meet the standards of a medical marijuana program by restricting the number of patients that are even able to have access to the glorified CBD oil, of which there are likely comparable products on the legal market already.
Georgia’s original intention likely wasn’t to provide a medicinal alternative to patients with chronic and terminally ill conditions, and as the program continues to stay on hold now 7 years into its inception, it’s clear that the future of medical marijuana will likely depend on voters, rather than legislators.
If voters manage to pass a comprehensive recreational marijuana program in Georgia, medical marijuana patients would benefit from the access to genuine medicine, which isn’t differentiated by its title as “medical”.
Only time will tell how Georgia will proceed with its paused medical marijuana program, and we hope that lawmakers move quickly to reshape how the program operates to provide meaningful medicine into the hands of patients in need.
Get Your Georgia Marijuana Card
The medical marijuana program in Georgia is currently on hold until the program’s infrastructure is assessed and reorganized. When the program is reinstated, patients will be able to register for Georgia’s low-THC cannabis oil, which is cannabis oil that contains less than 5% THC.
We are ready for Georgia to begin accepting applications for medical marijuana certifications and will be able to provide assistance in getting your medical marijuana card once applications are open.
You can pre-register for your appointment today by reserving your spot online!
We will be processing medical marijuana certifications as soon as the system is live for Georgia patients.
Reserve your appointment today and get $25 off when we start processing applications!
Feel free to give us a call at (866) 781-5606, and we can help answer any questions you may have about getting a medical marijuana certification in Georgia!