New Hampshire: Governor Rejects Medical Marijuana Measure; Do Lawmakers Have The Votes To Override His Veto?

As anticipated, Gov. John Lynch, a Democrat, today vetoed Senate Bill 409, which sought to allow for the personal possession, cultivation, and use of cannabis by qualified patients.

The measure now returns to House and Senate lawmakers, who have the power to enact SB 409 absent the Governor’s approval. On Wednesday, June 27, both chambers will vote on whether or not to override the Governor’s veto.

Gov. Lynch’s actions, though disappointing, were anticipated. The four-term governor, who recently announced that he would not be seeking re-election in 2012, had previously vetoed medicinal cannabis legalization in 2009 and had vowed to do likewise this year. That is why ever since the passage of SB 409, lawmakers and activists have been lobbying legislators, particularly Senate lawmakers, to assure that the measure possesses super-majority support in both chambers.

To review: House lawmakers on June 6 affirmed their support for SB 409 via a voice vote. They had previously voted in favor of the measure by the two-thirds majority necessary to override a veto by the Governor. (The actual vote was 236 to 96.) The Senate vote, however, was a different matter. In that chamber, lawmakers gave final approval to the bill by a vote of 13 to 9, a gain of two ‘yes’ votes since the Senate had previously acted on the bill in March, yet just shy of the two-thirds majority votes needed to override a veto. (A co-sponsor of the bill, Senator John Gallus, R-Berlin, was not present for the June 6 Senate vote.)

In short, two additional Senate ‘yes’ votes are needed to make New Hampshire the 18th state to allow for the limited legalization of cannabis therapy.

If you reside in the Granite State, the actions you take over the following days can help make this a reality. Click here to go to NORML’s ‘Take Action Center’ today to see how your Senator voted and to urge him or her to vote ‘yes’ this Wednesday on SB 209.

Additional information on this campaign is available from the Marijuana Policy Project here and from NH Compassion here.

25 thoughts

  1. Thank God i live in Colorado and my right to cannabis is nearly assured in twice the ways. I moved to Estes Park and there is a bumper sticker that alot of people have on their car and it says “just another ho-hum day in paradise.” Let me tell you smoke a joint and drink some green dragon then hop on a trail and listen to the birds.. that sticker couldnt be more accurate. Boo to you Mr Gov of New Hampshire for denying your citizens that freedom.

  2. I know many people who want to try marijuana for various painful conditions but the ignorant A-HOLES like Gov. Lynch don’t have the decency to allow it.; Glad this idiot is leaving office.

  3. one man, one vote, and yet his vote was worth more than the majority. a prime example of the individual following his own agenda and not the will of the majority.

  4. During prohibition, politicians were paid to keep liquor illegal. When I see someone in government, pounding on the podium about the evils of marijuana, it makes me wonder about their motivation.

  5. its only a matter of time on this, when the next gov comes in, he or she will sign it

  6. “Live free or die” New Hampshire is the only new england state left w/o any form of decriminalization or medical reform-They can all die since they’re not free:and it’s the only new england state I won’t be taking any vacations in this year.

  7. So let me get this right. The majority of citizens that make up an entire state are able to vote and voice their decision on a topic. Lawmakers can voice their decisions as well. So now you have people in power as well as the citizens in favor of SB 409.

    But regardless one individual has the power to say “No” regardless of what the state residents want?

    What’s the point of the entire process? I won’t start another soapbox of “Pharma, Oil, Tobacco and other adversaries can do some underhanded and pay off one person to say “No.”

    I am very glad to see progress being made. But the bottom is none of these state law have any substance at all unless the Federal Government finally admits their 75 year folly and says “enough is enough, the citizens of the U.S. win”.

    It’s just really frustrating to know that one idiot can everyone’s efforts and flush them down the toilet . . . at least temporarily.

  8. Sidenote . . . Really wish we could edit our statements. My early morning grammar is horrible! But I’m sure you get my drift.

  9. Funny to read on NORML’s news today that a Demo governor vetoed medpot and that the GOP in Montana is onboard with medpot so long as there’s some better rules.

    Who would of thunk it? LOL!

  10. There’s a wall of propagana misinformation to climb over. The notion of zero tollerance was embraced by both parties. We have to kick that notion to the curb.

  11. So has someone told Barry the Democrats are lining up behind mj reform? Unless he has it rescheduled BEFORE the elections, my vote is going to Gary Johnson…it may anyway. One state has to pass legalization for a nationwide conversation to take place, and if it doesn’t there will be 4 more years of politicians trying to offset the advancements.

  12. NH sucks, move to Maine. Starve their over property taxed economy. refuse to shop at their tax free stores, refuse to attend their 2.1 tourist attractions. Avoid NH businesses. Boycot NH

  13. Majority rule huh. Yes we must believe. Schedule 1 status on a substance that’s not even toxic. Get some beer and a gun and let’s support our government.

  14. This man deserves no such office. He doesn’t work for the people. It’s clear he’s doing this for himself. Hopefully the politicos can override his veto. And here I thought much if not all of New England was more progressive than this. Seems like a bit of a black eye to the people of NH when damn near everyone around you IS moving forward with this.

    What a fool. Boo this man indeed!

  15. Dr. Greensleeves. you are ignorant.

    NewHampshire is a federal preserve. NH has a constitution true to the U.S. Constitution. N.H. has practicaly no taxes. Because of their lack of taxes they take large loads from the Federal Government. Another Words NH will not go against the grain when it comes to federal drug laws. I am a veteran of NH’s war on Marijuana. 2.5 years probation and felon for life. Ive moved to maine and We do it real big out here.

  16. It’s really sad that Gov. John Lynch decided to veto the will of the people during his final year in office. Oh well, at least it’s finally his final year! Hopefully, someone with a bit of intelligence, decency, and compassion will replace this fool who will not be missed one bit!

  17. As a NH native, this absolutely breaks my heart. Although I now live in CO, I wrote to the governor several times because I am so passionate about the legalization of medical marijuana. I still have family back in NH, and they are in need of an alternative pain treatment course. How dare Gov Lynch deny anyone the option of alternative health treatments! The NH state motto is “live free or die”, and although I took so much pride in that statement as a resident, it seems contradicting to me now.

  18. THIS GOVERNOR CAN VOTE HIS WILL…and the people of the Granite state can move somewhere where freedom is alive. This is 2012…this Governor is clearly an idiot

  19. you fools don’t rely on the stupid governor for supporting the marijuana thing bypass the sob by the people for the we did here in AZ

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