Mississippi is on the verge of legalising medicinal cannabis after both state houses voted through an amended bill on Wednesday.
The Senate passed the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act by 46 votes to four while the House voted it through by 103-13. It will now go to Republican Governor Tate Reeves for approval.
A previous version of the bill had sparked concerns from Reeves about the amount of cannabis a qualified patient could buy, but it was amended to reduce the limit to around three ounces per month.
Should the Governor still choose to veto the bill, there is enough support in both houses to override him.
If passed, the bill will make Mississippi the third state in America’s deep south to legalise medicinal cannabis after Louisiana and Alabama.
Meanwhile, in South Carolina the Senate unanimously agreed to debate a bill to so likewise proposed by Republican Senator Tom Davis.
Davis described the bill as one of the most conservative in the country, with a ban on smoking in favour of oils, salves, patches and vaporisers and compulsory in-person consultations during which doctors would check for any history of substance abuse and create a written treatment plan.
Patients would also be limited to two-week supplies at one time which would only be available via specialist dispensaries run by a state-licensed pharmacist, physician assistant or clinical practice nurse.
Despite the Senate agreeing to debate it, the Compassionate Care Act is expected to meet strong opposition from Davis’s fellow Republicans when they come to vote on it.
And in Minnesota, Democrat Governor Tim Waltz has included funding to legalise recreational cannabis use in his annual budget request to lawmakers.
However, despite support for reform in the Democrat-controlled House, it may struggle to pass the Republican-controlled Senate.