Reality Check: Politics of pot in Ohio

Reality Check: Politics of pot in Ohio

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Last month's Quinnipiac University survey proved to be a landslide for supporters of the legalization of medical marijuana. The margin was a whopping eight to one, and yet Ohio lawmakers are nowhere close to legalizing marijuana as medicine.

According to a Gallup survey, nearly 2/3 of republicans oppose the legalization of medical marijuana and the Buckeye State enjoys what's known as a republican "trifecta." Ohio is one of 23 states with a GOP controlled house and senate and a republican governor who had this to say when we asked him about medical marijuana:

KASICH "I'm not for it."

REPORTER "Not even cannabis oil?"

KASICH "I'm not for it."

REPORTER "What do you think the chances are…"

KASICH "I'm not a fortune teller, I don't think the state wants it."

Ohio Democratic State Representative Robert Hagan has sponsored medical marijuana legislation in the past only to face strong opposition from his colleagues on the right. Hagan believes Ohio's majority is out of touch saying quote, "I think the republicans have shown rather easily that they are locked into the last century, locked into the old days of reefer madness and they haven't gotten off that."

Meanwhile, in an effort to get around GOP lawmakers, an Ohio Rights group is collecting signatures for a November ballot initiative. They need 385-thousand signatures by July 2, and as of this week they have between 50 and 60 thousand.

As for Hagan, he's now calling for the legalization of cannabis oil.

'It's been proven that what we're seeing in Colorado - rescuing some of these kids from their seizures and using marijuana paste - that CBD Oil, they're having success with it," he says.

The bottom line is this. As long as a majority of republicans remain opposed to it, and as long as Ohio republicans hold both houses and the governor's office, supporters of medical marijuana are facing an uphill battle.


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