Mexico’s Progressive Bill Legalizing Cannabis Stalled Again Because Of Pandemic
There has been a global movement to legalize cannabis beyond medicinal usage. Advocates are pushing to recreational use as well as opening up government money to allow for research into marijuana and hemp. Some states in the U.S. have legalized recreational marijuana including California and Illinois. Mexico keeps getting closer and closer to eventually passing a bill to legalize marijuana.
Mexico missed another deadline to pass a bill legalizing marijuana.
Mexican officials were making progress on a new bill that would legalize cannabis across the country regardless of THC levels. This means both marijuana and hemp would be legal in the Latin American country bordering the U.S. The move would mean that the U.S. would be the lone country in the North American bloc without federal legalization of marijuana.
Uruguay was the first country in the world to legalize marijuana.
Uruguay legalized marijuana in 2017 becoming pioneers in the legal and social experiments surrounding cannabis legalization. Most notably, businesses had to figure out how to make money from the sale of cannabis while adhering to international banking regulations that make it illegal to handle money made from selling drugs. Several pharmacies in the country that were selling marijuana were told to stop selling the product or close their accounts.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s political party is behind the bill fighting for legalization.
In 2018, the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) wrote legislation to legalize marijuana. The motion, submitted by Senator Olga Sánchez Cordero, calls out the prohibition of marijuana and how it leads to the violence Mexico has experienced.
“Today, the nation has taken the decision to change,” Sen. Sánchez Cordero told her colleagues the day the motion was filed. “We don’t want more deaths. It will be a major contribution to bringing peace to our beloved country.”
AMLO has since come out against the legalization of marijuana.
“We are analyzing everything that will help ensure that there is no violence, that consumption does not increase, and that at the same time medical attention is guaranteed to those who require it,” AMLO said during a presidential conference.
COVID-19 has put a stop to the bill for now but it isn’t done yet.
The March legislation session was canceled because of the pandemic meaning that they will miss the April 30 deadline to pass the bill. The next legislative session is from Sept. 1 to Dec. 15. Even if the bill is passed then, it could take years for Mexico to set up the appropriate systems to regulate and sell marijuana.