House again passes marijuana legalization bill

  • Marijuana File photo

Associated Press
Published: 1/6/2022 4:46:09 PM
Modified: 1/6/2022 4:45:29 PM

The New Hampshire House has again voted to legalize the personal use and cultivation of small amounts of marijuana.

The bill sent to the Senate on Thursday would allow adults to possess up to ¾ of an ounce of marijuana and to grow up to six plants. It could be traded or given away or not sold.

“It is not and never has been the job of government to try to protect you from hurting yourself, and outside of 1950s B horror movies, it has never been the job of government to protect you from a plant,” said Rep. Max Abramson, a Seabrook Republican.

For years, proponents of marijuana legalization have argued that the idea of prohibition is antiquated, that the old propaganda delivered by such movies as the cult classic Reefer Madness looks silly today, with its depiction of pot smokers who go insane and murder and hallucinate.

A similar bill passed the House in 2020 but died in the Senate after Bedford Police Chief John Bryfonski, a former DEA agent, spoke against it. A broader bill in 2019 that would have created a regulated and taxed retail market also ran aground in the Senate.

The bill approved Thursday had been retained for further work over the summer. Lawmakers also will be considering several new marijuana legalization bills in the coming months.

Republican Gov. Chris Sununu opposes such measures. The latest bill passed the House with five votes more than needed to achieve a veto-proof majority.

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