CNMI Senate Takes Up Medicinal Marijuana Bill


Guam – CNMI Senator Luis Crisostimo supports the legalization of marijuana use for all purposes in the CNMI and promised to propose a substitute bill to the one already approved by the CNMI House.

Senator Crisostimo said an alternative to Rep. Stanley Torres’ proposal to decriminalize marijuana use would be to introduce a new bill that would only allow cannabis use for medicinal purposes.

Crisostimo claimed that at least three senators are backing him up on a substitute bill. Gov. Benigno R. Fitial last week said he will sign a medical marijuana bill if it hurdles the Senate.

However, Crisostimo’s colleagues at the Senate, led by President Paul Manglona, continue to oppose the legalization of marijuana and vowed defeat the bill in an upcoming session.

Torres, meanwhile, said that if the Senate rejects his marijuana legalization bill, he will introduce a new bill that calls for its legalization albeit only for medicinal use.

Medical marijuana use is legal in 16 states in the U.S., including Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington. Maryland, meanwhile, allows for reduced penalties if marijuana use has medical basis.