SC senator to get medical marijuana debate after 7 years

January 23, 2022 GMT

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina senator who has fought to allow medical marijuana in the state for seven years appears to finally be getting a debate on the Senate floor.

Senators put Sen. Tom Davis’ medical marijuana bill in a special debate slot where they will have to take it up before almost all other bills.

The Beaufort Republican expects that could be either Tuesday or Wednesday.

Davis’ proposal is one of the most conservative in the country. People using medical marijuana could not smoke it. Doctors would have to meet patients in person before prescribing the oil, checking for any history of substance abuse and creating a written treatment plan.

The proposal specifies the illnesses that be treated including cancer, multiple sclerosis, glaucoma. sickle cell anemia and autism.

The bill is still opposed by a number of law enforcement groups as well as State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark Keel and Attorney General Alan Wilson. Several Christian groups also are against it.

Davis said he thinks he has enough votes in the Senate to send the bill to the House, where leaders have not discussed publicly whether they will tackle it before the 2022 session ends.

More than three-quarters of U.S. states have passed laws allowing medical marijuana.