It was mid-February when Minnesota House Majority Leader Ryan Winkler (DFL) pledged to introduce what he’d called “the best legalization bill in the country” within the coming weeks. Shortly after, the state plunged along with the rest of the country into the global coronavirus outbreak, and marijuana reform was put on ice.
Now, as states begin taking steps toward normalcy, Winkler has finally revealed the promised bill, introduced on Tuesday with 33 cosponsors.
“Our current priority is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said after filing the legislation, “but after the town halls and discussions around this issue, we still wanted to put a strong bill forward. As we look to come out of this crisis as a better, stronger Minnesota, we need to continue working toward legalizing cannabis for responsible adult use.”
“We made a commitment to introduce legislation this session, and we wanted to follow through on that commitment.”
At 222 pages, the bill is an ambitious attempt to address some of the most salient issues around cannabis legalization in 2020, and it reflects an awareness of the challenges encountered by other states that have already legalized.