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Wisconsin Senate GOP Leaders Say Assembly Bill To Create State-Run ‘DMV For Medical Marijuana’ Is A ‘Non-Starter’

Top Republican Wisconsin senators are already signaling that a newly unveiled bill from their Assembly GOP colleagues to create a strictly limited medical cannabis program may be a “non-starter”—especially as it concerns its novel proposal to have state-run dispensaries that the Senate majority leader is critically comparing to a “DMV for medical marijuana.”

Just days after Wisconsin Assembly Republicans held a series of press conferences across the state to announce their much-anticipated plan to legalize medical cannabis, Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu (R) and Senate President Chris Kapenga (R) are tempering expectations, raising concerns on behalf of their chamber’s caucus about specific provisions and the broader thrust of the Assembly legislation.

Conservative Assembly lawmakers have proudly proclaimed it would create the “most restrictive” medical marijuana program in the country, with bans on smokeable products, a limited list of qualifying conditions and just five state-run dispensaries.

It was already a question whether the state’s Democratic lawmakers and governor who have pushed for comprehensive adult-use legalization would go along with the proposal, but now a more pressing question is whether the GOP Senate will support it.

LeMahieu, the majority leader, said on Thursday that the state-controlled dispensary plan is a “non-starter for

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