Gov. Tom Wolf Says Pennsylvania is Not Ready for Recreational Marijuana


Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program is picking up steam, but Gov. Tom Wolf still doesn’t think the state is ready to legalize recreational use. Wolf revealed his opinion during a local radio program on Tuesday, which is the same opinion he held back in March 2017.

Last Tuesday, one week before Wolf’s radio interview, the state Department of Health doubled its licensed medical cannabis growers by issuing 13 new permits. The program is rapidly expanding and has been deemed a success by the 700-plus doctors registered to prescribe the drug and the over 30,000 patients approved for marijuana use.

Despite his state’s recent progress with regulated marijuana, Wolf remains convinced that Pennsylvanians can’t handle the drug for legal adult use. During a segment with Pittsburgh’s KDKA 1020, Wolf dodged any form of explanation for his opinion and instead pointed to the fact that only six states have legalized recreational use so far.

He went on to mention the positive progress the state is making with medical marijuana regulations, saying the drug can “fill a gap” in patient treatment options. He also brought up the recent addition of dry cannabis leaf and flower sales, though he admitted he does not understand who these work better for some patients.

Though Wolf did not express any disapproval of the state’s expanding medical marijuana program, he is resistant to arguments in favor of recreational use. When state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale brought up the financial incentives for full legalization, Wolf had the same response. He was careful not to say state voters are opposed, only that they are not ready.

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