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North Carolina Senators Attach Medical Marijuana Legalization Amendment To Hemp Bill

Republican North Carolina senators are taking a new approach to advancing medical marijuana legalization in the state—successfully fighting to attach an amendment enact the reform to a hemp- and kratom-focused bill that cleared a Senate committee.

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday approved the legislation to regulate intoxicating hemp cannabinoid products such as delta-8 THC. But prior to its passage, members adopted an amendment from Sen. Michael Lazzara (R) containing language that would allow doctors to recommend medical marijuana to patients with certain qualifying conditions.

The text is similar to that of a standalone bill from Sen. Bill Rabon (R), a cancer survivor who has sponsored multiple medical cannabis proposals.

Rabon, who has become known for leveraging different legislative tactics to force the issue, previously described his interest in using the hemp legislation as a potential vehicle after his latest standalone stalled in the House.

The senator told the committee on Wednesday that it makes sense to use the intoxicating hemp bill as a vehicle to legalize and regulate medical cannabis given that the crops are the same species and have the same components, albeit legally defined differently.

“That’s not too hard for folks in this room to figure out,”

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