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Missouri Marijuana Legalization Bill Aims High but Expectations Remain Low

An ambitious new bill called the Cannabis Freedom Act from Missouri state Rep. Ron Hicks (R–St. Charles County) aims to legalize recreational marijuana consumption, provide relief to nonviolent offenders who used the drug, and allow restaurants, bars, and other private venues to sell cannabis.

The bill would allow adults aged 21 or older to purchase and possess cannabis from licensed sellers. The bill intends to get rid of the existing statutes that criminalize marijuana activity and does not specify a possession limit for the drug. The bill would also make home growing legal with a limit of up to 12 plants, and home growers could contract out their own product to licensed sellers.

State Rep. Richard Brown (D–Kansas City), the bill’s co-sponsor, says he supports legalization because “it’s just time” to stop punishing those who use marijuana. He also said that the bill’s bipartisan support (which currently includes eight Republican sponsors and six Democrats) means it could make it to the House floor for debate. Brown says that during his six-year tenure in office, a House debate on marijuana legalization has never occurred. [Read more at Reason Magazine]

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