On September 1st, Texas legalized an incredibly limited medical marijuana program. And while you'd think that the traditionally conservative state would want to keep it that way, it turns out that's not exactly the case.
A survey conducted earlier this year found that 83 percent of Texans support some form of legalized marijuana. Of that 83 percent, 30 percent approved of medical use only, 32 percent approved of small amounts of marijuana being legalized and 21 percent supported any amount.
For a long time, Texas was one of the few states that resisted even medical marijuana legalization. On September 1st, Texas finally enacted the "Compassionate Use Act" that allowed very limited amounts of medical marijuana in the state.
Unfortunately, many argue that Texas' medical marijuana act is practically useless. Under the law, patients can only use products that are 0.5 percent THC. Federal law puts the limit on THC in products at 0.3 percent, so many patients can already acquire similarly potent medicinal marijuana products even without the law.
There's also strict regulations for when patients can actually be approved for medical marijuana in Texas. Under the law, patients are required to get two doctors' recommendations for medicinal cannabis. Then, the patient needs to be entered into a statewide registry before they can acquire any marijuana. Texas doctors have begun entering into the state registry, and the first dispensary licenses are being distributed. But there's no idea when patients in the state will actually gain access to medical marijuana.
Earlier this year the Texas state legislature attempted to pass a bill that would de-criminalize small amounts of marijuana. Despite the bill getting bipartisan support, the Texas Freedom Caucus blocked the bill from passing. But if what the survey says is correct, then soon the legislature may have to get on board with legalization efforts.