While most midwestern states have legalized recreational marijuana, Wisconsin remains a holdout on recreational and medicinal marijuana. Recent years have seen discussions toward broader legalization, but so far the state has resisted all efforts toward legalization.
Recent indications by lawmakers suggest no activity will take place in 2022.
A slow process
According to a report by AP News, the Wisconsin legislature held hearings on medical marijuana in April of 2022. Supporters of marijuana legalization described the hearing as an opportunity to get feedback from stakeholders and to lead the way for legislation in 2023.
Though polling shows strong support for full legalization in Wisconsin, the state has yet to take action to eliminate the illegality of marijuana use. This comes at a time when Minnesota and Iowa allow for medical marijuana use and Michigan and Illinois allow for recreational and medical use. Due to the meeting schedule of the Wisconsin legislature, the passage of any new marijuana rulings cannot happen until 2023 at the earliest.
A broad discussion
While some lawmakers argue for incremental legalization that only includes medical use under certain circumstances, others support full legalization. Many observers believe that due to the makeup of the legislature, the likelihood of legalizing medical marijuana does not exist. These observers believe that the passage of medical marijuana use remains the only possibility.
One lawmaker highlighted the fact that 37 states already allow for the medical use of marijuana. The discussion covered a wide range of topics:
- The safety of marijuana
- The danger of second-hand smoke
- The decriminalization of marijuana
- The types of illnesses that marijuana helps
More than likely, Wisconsin lawmakers will revisit the issue of marijuana legalization in 2023. The results could impact many people in the state.