If Virginia's Governor signs several new medical marijuana bills like expected soon, the state will become the second in the US to allow pharmacies to manufacture and sell medical marijuana oil to patients with intractable epilepsy. While this is progress, Virginia has a long way to go before it has a full medical marijuana program able to benefit a wide enough range of patients. Current state law calls for the automatic suspension of a person's driver's license if caught possessing even a small amount of marijuana, but a new bill seeks to give judges discretion over each ruling. Lawmakers seem to be listening to the voters as public opinion is showing in polls that Virginians want marijuana policy reform.
“We are optimistic,” she said. “The polling shows that Virginians desperately want their marijuana policy changed and laws reformed in some capacity, and I think that lawmakers are starting to hear the call in Virginia as well as throughout the U.S.”
“It has no psychotropic effects, and no one is dealing it on the illicit market. For the people that are sick and really wanted the bill to pass, it was heartbreaking,” Vogel said. “I think this is a little bit of bias and a little bit of lack of education … The overwhelming majority of the voting public believes having access to that kind of medication is very helpful.”