Several states look like they’re committed to being the last places to legalize cannabis. Which one do you think will be the last prohibitionist standing and why?
Whitt Steineker | Attorney | Bradley Arant Boult Cummings
A somewhat dubious distinction in my book, but it certainly appears that way. It depends on how exactly you count (does South Carolina’s low THC/CBD program count, for example), but I think it comes down to South Carolina, Kansas, Idaho and Wyoming. My gut is something gets done in the next 18 months in South Carolina. I’m not betting against ski bums in Wyoming or Idaho. So Kansas it is.
Sara Gullickson | CEO | The Cannabis Business Advisors
Kansas, Idaho and Nebraska are the only states without CBD, medical or recreational cannabis allowances and may be the last ones standing. There are myriad reasons that specific states resist legalization, but public opinion is shifting and a majority of adults believe that cannabis should be legal for medical and recreational use.
Debbie Tharp | Legal Editor | NuggMD
It would have to be one of the still fully illegal states. Of these, South Carolina goes medical by 2024. Kansas may have “bigger fish to fry this year,” but they’re under steady pressure due to Missouri’s success. Soon there.
Idaho has an almost extreme conservative movement focusing myopically on neighboring states’ failures, often attributed to permissive drug laws. But the majority still approve of MMJ, 68%, and Kind Idaho just started gathering signatures for 2024. It’s going to happen this time and recreational will follow soon enough.
That leaves Wyoming. They failed to qualify an initiative for 2024, so three more years there, minimum, to medical.
Snowden Stieber | Regulatory analyst | Simplifya
Although there have been some promising cannabis trends in Kansas, including the introduction of a bill to legalize certain forms of medicinal cannabis, and the fact that the state’s populace is now exposed to legal markets on its western and eastern borders, I think Kansas will be the last state to permit adult-use. The deciding factor that will keep Kansas from moving forward, compared to other states that currently prohibit cannabis, is the lack of initiatives or referendums available to Kansans to implement legal change.