Connecticut’s Senate approved a marijuana legalization bill during a special legislative session on Tuesday in a narrow, 19-12 vote. The measure now proceeds to the House, which is expected to take it up on Wednesday. Senate lawmakers passed largely similar legislation just a week ago on a similarly thin margin—but hours before the regular session came to a close, House leaders announced they would delay action in that chamber until this week’s special session. They’ve repeatedly said they have the votes to usher in the policy change despite pushback from Republicans and remaining skepticism from some Democrats. Senator Gary Winfield (D), who spoke on behalf of the bill during Tuesday’s floor debate, stressed that the bill would not only create and regulate a new industry but also address past criminal drug policies that have disproportionately harmed people of color. At one point during the debate, Lamont’s office issued a statement threatening to veto the legislation over a provision that would let anyone with a past cannabis arrest or conviction receive priority status for a marijuana license regardless of their wealth. An amendment, however, was adopted in an attempt to address that concern by setting an income limit for those applicants.
Ben Adlin, Marijuana Moment, 06/15/2021 18:34:00