Gov. Mike DeWine told Ohio Public Radio in an interview this week that he is still opposed to legalizing marijuana.
“It would really be a mistake for Ohio, by legislation, to say that marijuana for adults is just ok,” he said.
DeWine is concerned about the potential health risks marijuana would have on young people if it became legal, and, he believes the marijuana grown today is stronger than the kind that was grown 40 or 50 years ago.
These comments are similar to what DeWine voiced this summer after Cincinnati passed a law decriminalizing marijuana possession up to 100 grams. The governor told the Cincinnati Enquirer that he thought the law “was not a good idea” and that he was against marijuana legislation.
“I just look at all the things that happen with recreational marijuana and I kind of scratch my head and I say, why? Why would we want to do that?” DeWine told WKYC at the beginning of 2019.
As attorney general five years ago, DeWine disagreed with the proposed Ohio Marijuana Legalization Initiative that would have legalized recreational marijuana. The proposed initiative failed as almost 64 percent of Ohioans voted against it.
The topic of marijuana came up as states bordering Ohio — Michigan and Illinois– have recently started allowing citizens to buy recreational marijuana.
Many Ohioans are crossing state lines to purchase marijuana. For example, Michigan Supply and Provisions, which is a newly opened cannabis shop in Morenci, Michigan, told the Detroit Free Press that at least 50 percent of its clientele comes from the Buckeye state.
“We see really good traffic from Ohio, a really good influx,” Regional Director of Michigan Supply and Provisions Brian Thienel said. “Our phones have been ringing off the hook.”
Ohio is starting to become more open to marijuana usage. To illustrate, three years ago Ohio legalize medical marijuana. However, less than half of the people registered in the state’s medical marijuana program have actually bought the cannabis.
On top of that, Ohio’s medical marijuana is costing taxpayers $450 an ounce, which is higher than neighboring state Pennsylvania where it costs $280 an ounce.
According to the Enquirer, 3.5 million Ohioans are eligible for medical marijuana.
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Zachery Schmidt is the digital editor of Star News Digital Media. If you have any tips, email Zachery at [email protected]