Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Texas Prop 19

I get a lot of hits from people searching for Texas Prop 19. I wonder if they think we might be able to introduce something like Prop 19 here in Texas? If you think so, wake up from your pipe dream. Texas Legislators are trying to see who can file anti-drug bills the fastest.

Democrat Aaron Pena almost tripped over Debbie Riddle trying to file H.B. No. 49, which would add "synthetic cannabinoids" to Penalty Group 2. (I wonder if this includes Marinol?)

My friend Buford says, "As many real tigers as the Lege has to fight this year, this bill probably won't see the light of day. The real problem is that since the state's fiscal problems can't be solved without a massive redoing of the tax structure (can anyone say "In***e tax"?), the Lege may try to play to its social conservative base with a bunch of feel-good junk like voter ID, anti-immigration, and banning "fake mj". This entire session should rate somewhere between pie-in-the-face comedy and everyone-dies tradegy."

Not to be outdone, Republicans got their licks in too. Ken Legler filed a bill requiring drug testing of recipients of unemployment benefits (H.B. No. 126) and Jodie Laubenberg thinks that persons applying for government financial assistance should be tested (H.B. No 139).

Drug policy reformers here in Texas will have their hands full in the 82nd Legislative session just trying not to lose ground. We don't have a prayer for any progressive drug policy reform bills.

People who would like to see a Prop 19 type of bill passed here in Texas better get active. There is a lot of educating to do before that becomes a possibility.


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