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As Trump Signals Support for Marijuana Legalization, N.H. Democrat Plans New Pot Bill

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New Hampshire's Senate Minority Leader plans to file legislation to legalize and tax marijuana in the upcoming legislative session.

Democrat Jeff Woodburn announced the renewed push following President Trump signaling he is willing to support a bipartisan marijuana legalization effort that respects states' rights.

"It's time for the 'Live Free Or Die' state to come out of the shadows of marijuana prohibition and catch up with our neighbors by legalizing, regulating, and restricting access of marijuana to children and young people," Woodburn said in a statement. "I will again sponsor a tax and regulate legalization model in the next session."

New Hampshire has a medical marijuana law, enacted in 2013, but state lawmakers have rejected numerous efforts to legalize recreational marijuana for adults. The House of Representatives passed a bill to legalize marijuana back in January, but it ultimately killed the bill. 

New Hampshire has a commission charged with studying marijuana legalization, regulation, and taxation. It is set to reports its findings by Nov. 1, 2018.

Meanwhile, the commission, along with advocates and critics alike, are watching neighboring states as they have legalized recreational marijuana. In Massachusetts, retail pot shops are scheduled to open July 1.

Dan is a long-time New Hampshire journalist who has written for outlets including Foster's Daily Democrat, The Citizen of Laconia, The Boston Globe, and The Eagle-Tribune. He comes to NHPR from the New Hampshire Union Leader, where he reported on state, local, and national politics.

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