Utahns voted in favor of Proposition 2 on Tuesday’s midterm elections.
The proposition legalizes medical marijuana for patients with certain medical conditions. The votes counted as of 11:55 p.m. had 53 percent of the votes “for” the proposition.
Jared Stroud, founder of Legalize Utah, doesn’t benefit from medicinal marijuana personally, but “the idea of helping others in pain” inspired the start of this special movement.
Early on, a majority of Utahns showed support of Prop 2, with polls estimating that around two-thirds of the population would vote in favor of the measure.
Movements to legalize medical cannabis started in 2015, when State Sen. Mark B. Madsen tried to pass a law that would let patients with certain diseases use the plant to treat themselves.
Prop 2 would allow for patients to receive a marijuana card recommended to them by a physician. These cards would allow for the patient to buy up to two ounces of unprocessed cannabis over a 14-day period.
Opponents to Prop 2 include Drug Safe Utah and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
In a statement made by the group Drug Safe Utah, they said, “We do not object to marijuana derivatives being used in medicinal form — so long as appropriate controls and safeguards are in place to ensure vulnerable populations are protected and access is limited to truly medicinal purposes.”
Not all Utahns have been in favor of Prop 2.
Opponents point to increased marijuana usage amongst youth and an increase in DUIs in states where the plant is medically legal as reason to vote no on Prop 2.
Most opponents to the bill aren’t entirely against the medical use of cannabis, but instead cite a lack of safeguards in Prop 2 as their reason to vote no.
Utah comes up behind the curve in terms of legalizing medical marijuana, as over half of all states have legalized cannabis in one way or another.
Measures dealing with cannabis were on ballots in three other states alongside Utah, but marijuana still remains a schedule 1 drug as seen by the federal government.