Cannabis

 

Legislative Update

3/04/2021 -  House introduces House Joint Resolution 004 "The purpose of this proposed constitutional amendment is to prohibit the legalization of controlled substances unless approved by two-thirds (2/3) of the Idaho legislature."

3/04/2021 - H1026  Read second time; Filed for Third Reading

3/03/2021 - The LPID formally endorses KindIdaho's Medical Marijuana Act 2022 <link>

2/15/2021 - Medical Marijuana Act 2022 Kicks off petition gathering

2/11/2021 - House Bill 126 is introduced. This bill "Amends and adds to existing law to establish provisions regarding industrial hemp."

2/09/2021 - House Bill 108 aka Sergeant Kitzhaber Medical Cannabis Act is introduced. This bill "Amends and adds to existing law to authorize the possession, distribution, transportation, and use of cannabis for medical purposes, to impose an excise tax on medical cannabis and medical cannabis devices, and to provide that marijuana and tetrahydrocannabinols or synthetic equivalents are Schedule II controlled substances.

2/08/2021 -  Medical Marijuana Act 2022 financial impact approved.

2/04/2021 - SJR 101 Read First Time, Referred to State Affairs

1/29/2021 - SJR 101 Approved by House and sent to the Senate.

SJR 101 would be a proposed constitutional amendment next year on the ballot, it must have 2/3rds of the Idaho Senate and 2/3rds of the Idaho House.

The governor will have no veto power over SJR 101 because proposed constitutional amendments are ultimately approved or rejected by voters.

A date for the full Idaho Senate to take up SJR 101 has not yet been determined but there are enough co-sponsors on the measure as it currently stands to pass it when a vote does take place.

Citizen video of this meeting is available at: https://fb.watch/3qGEcmudwP/

1/25/2021 - The Senate State Affairs Committee held a public hearing on SJR 101, a ban on marijuana and other psychoactive drugs.

1/19/2021 - Reported Printed; referred to State Affairs.

1/18/2021 -  SJR 101 is Introduced by the State Affairs Committee   

12/20/2020 Medical Marijuana Act 2022 received by Secretary of State

<more information>

 

Decriminalization of Cannabis 

Cannabis legalization is the removal of criminal penalties for cannabis activities such as production, distribution, possession, and consumption, and includes the replacement of those penalties with regulations on commercial cannabis activity.

Libertarians believe that the existing justice system is seriously flawed. One of the biggest problems we face today is that many things that should not be considered crimes are labeled as crimes. Worse yet, many of these actions are punished more harshly than are violent crimes.  We believe that ending the War on Drugs is an essential part of any plan to improve our justice system. The War on Drugs hurts the people we should be trying to help and diverts criminal justice resources away from prosecuting actual crimes committed against people and property.

Legalization is a huge topic and an important societal issue facing voters in Idaho as efforts to put a statewide proposition continue to mature. Voters have many questions about legalization in our state, as well as the difference between federal and state laws for cannabis.  The Libertarian Party of Idaho supports the decriminalization of cannabis. Our motivations behind this are to prioritize safety especially when it comes to young people by reducing crime, corruption and violence, massive illicit markets and other harmful health consequences of drugs produced in the absence of regulatory oversight. 

1) Since 2012, 15 states, Washington, DC, and Canada have legalized cannabis for adults over the age of 21. 36 states have legalized medical marijuana. Mexico is in the process of finalizing their legalization. Idaho is almost completely surrounded by legal access to cannabis products. The continued prohibition on cannabis only encourages Idaho citizens to travel for access and encourages a dangerous black market within our state.

2) Marijuana arrests are down. Arrests for marijuana in all legal marijuana states and Washington, D.C. have plummeted, saving states hundreds of millions of dollars and sparing thousands of people from being branded with lifelong criminal records. Seven in ten Americans support clearing the records of people with non-violent marijuana convictions (yougov.com)

3) Cannabis legalization is linked to lower rates of opioid related harm. Increased access to legal marijuana has been associated with reductions in some of the most troubling harms associated with opioids, including opioid overdose deaths and untreated opioid use disorders. (drugpolicy.org)

4) Fewer than 10 percent of those who try marijuana ever end up meeting the clinical criteria for dependence, whereas 32 percent of tobacco users and 15 percent of alcohol users do. (drugpolicy.org)

5) Legalization of cannabis does not increase use in youth. According to the most recent Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey - released 12/15/2020 -  substance use behaviors and related attitudes among teens in the United States indicate there was “no change” in the rate of current cannabis use among high school students from 2009-2019. The survey, conducted by the University of Michigan and funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, also revealed that fewer adolescents are using marijuana now compared to 2012 (www.drugabuse.gov)

Research published in November 2020 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention demonstrates states that have legalized marijuana for recreational use have seen sharp declines in youth treatment admission rates for the drug. The report that also shows teen admission rates for cannabis misuse fell nationwide by nearly half during the 2008-2017 period. (cdc.gov)

6)  There is no correlation between cannabis legalization and crash rates. The crash rates in both states are statistically similar to comparable states without legal cannabis. DUI arrests are down in Colorado and Washington. The total number of arrests for driving under the influence, of alcohol and other drugs, has declined in Colorado and Washington, the first two states to regulate marijuana for adult use. (crime.denverpost.com) (Q13fox.com)

7) Despite the political back-and-forth, most Americans want legal cannabis, according to recent polls. Sixty-seven percent of Americans polled by Pew Research said marijuana should be legal, with only 32% in opposition. (pewresearch.org)

8) A two-thirds majority of Americans—including 51 percent of Republicans—support the M.O.R.E. bill to federally legalize marijuana that was approved by the U.S. House of Representatives, according to a new poll. (Morningconsultant.com)

A poll published by Gallup last month found that 68 percent of respondents were in favor of legalizing cannabis for adult use, which the firm said is its “highest reading” since it started polling voters on the issue in 1969. (gallup.com)

9) The marijuana industry is creating jobs. Preliminary estimates suggest that the legal marijuana industry employs between 165,000 to 230,000 full and part-time workers across the country. This number will only continue to grow as more states legalize marijuana and replace their unregulated markets with new legal markets. (drugpolicy.org)

We encourage you to share your support for the decriminalization of cannabis and these facts with our elected representatives through their websites:  gov.idaho.gov; crapo.senate.gov; risch.senate.gov; fulcher.house.gov; simpson.house.gov

 

 

More Information

Here are some great links for more information on Idaho's Cannabis Initiative

  • Idaho Legalization Efforts
    • Kind Idaho - 2021 Cannabis Initiative organization (link)
    • Idaho Cannabis Collective - previous ballot efforts (link)

  • National Legalization Efforts
    • H.R.3884 - MORE Act of 2020 (link)
    • Map of marijuana legality by state (link)
    • Marijuana Legislation Tracking (link)
    • Tips for Talking to Congress (link) 

  • National Libertarian Party Position
    • National Libertarian Party's Platform (link)
    • National Libertarian Party - War on Drugs (link)

  • Facts and Figures
    • From Prohibition to Progress: A Status Report on Marijuana Legalization (link)
    • Open Letter from Researchers, Academics, Clinicians, and Public Health Organizations Endorsing Federal Marijuana Legalization Bill (link)

   

Template Letter

 

Return Address

 

[Your Name]

[Address]

[City, ID.  Zip Code]

 

Date

 

[Insert Date]

 

Representative’s Address

 

The Honorable [Insert Senator’s Name]

[Insert Senator’s Office Address]

[Insert Senator’s Office Address]

[Click here to find your representative]

 

Salutation

 

Dear Senator [Insert Last Name]:

 

Introduce yourself

[your name, address and school/ profession/ community role to identify that you are a constituent]

Why are you writing your Senator? 

[Be specific with your suggestion, idea or request.  How has the Bill of Rights or one of its specific rights impacted your own life?]

Ask for a response 

Thank your Senator for his/her time

 

Dear Senator [Insert Last Name]:

My name is _[Insert Your Name]_ and I reside at _[Insert Your Address]_ in _[Insert Your City]_, Idaho.  I am a _[insert personal identifiers]_.

As one of your constituents, I urge you to oppose SJR 101. _[why this matters]_.  Your vocal support of the legalization of cannabis will help encourage Idahoans to read, analyze, and discuss the upcoming initiative and how legalization can positively influences or lives today.

I appreciate your help and ask that you please send me a response letting me know how you are able to support the upcoming cannabis initiative.

Thank you for your time and considering my request.

 

 

Thank your Senator for his/her time

 

Thank you for your time and considering my request.

 

Closing with your name

 

Sincerely,

[Insert Your Name]

 

 

Letter to the Editor

Your local newspaper’s opinion section helps legislators judge the amount and intensity of support for reforming Idaho’s antiquated marijuana prohibition laws.

Here are some of the major publications in Idaho that accept Letters to the Editor. Remember:

  • Be brief — Most media outlets only allow so many words.  Expect to be allowed 200–300 words for a Letter to the Editor.  Opinion Pieces allow more words but the news outlet will scrutinize these longer pieces and are more likely to be rejected.
  • Be personal — Explain how the current marijuana prohibition laws are affecting you and your family.
  • Be local — Write to the publications that serve your local area - Outside opinions are rarely published.
  • Be polite — Strong and coarse messaging will get pro-legalization readers to agree but wont change minds.  Your goal in writing should be focused on persuading the unsure or undecided.  

 

Media Outlet City / Area Contact Form Twitter
Argus Observer Payette

Contact Form N/A
Big Country News Lewis-Clark Valley, Camas Prairie, Palouse, and Clearwater

Contact Form @BigCountryNews1
Bonner County Daily Bee Sandpoint

Contact Form N/A
Coeur d'Alene Press Coeur d'Alene

Contact Form @CdAPressNews
Idaho County Free Press Grangeville

Contact Form N/A
Idaho Press-Tribune State Wide

Contact Form @theIdahoPress
Idaho State Journal State Wide

Contact Form @IdahoStateJ
Idaho Statesman Idaho

Contact Form @idahostatesman
Kootenai Valley Times Bonners Ferry

Contact Form @KVTimes
Kuna Melba-News Kuna, ID

Contact Form N/A
Magic Valley Times-News Twin Falls

Contact Form N/A
Meridian Press Meridian, ID

Contact Form @MyMeridianPress
Moscow-Pullman Daily News State Wide

Contact Form N/A
Post Register State Wide

Contact Form @thepostregister
Shoshone News Press Wallace

Contact Form N/A
Teton Valley News Driggs

Contact Form N/A
The Lewiston Tribune Lewiston

Contact Form N/A
Times-News Magic Valley

Contact Form @twinfallstn

 

If you have other publications you know that will accept Letters to the Editor, please contact us.

 

Sharable Content

Here is some sharable content to show your support for the decriminalization of cannabis on your social media accounts