Lawmakers approve amendments to medical marijuana bill

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HARRISBURG – State lawmakers went into the late hours Monday discussing medical marijuana, debating amendments to the approved Senate bill.

The House is reviewing more than 200 amendments to Senate Bill 3, which would permit medical marijuana in the Keystone State.

They approved numerous key amendments, including several agreed upon by both parties, such as one to clarify language in the bill, one that adds autism to the list of conditions that could be treated with cannabis and also removed a cap on THC.

“This was an exercise, a very positive exercise in bipartisanship,” Rep. Kevin Schreiber, (D) – York, said. “This had R’s and D’s compromising and really working towards a bill that can reach 102 votes in the House, 26 in the Senate and one governor.”

The session began with Republican Rep. Matthew Baker speaking for more than an hour against the bill, and there were others, even Democrats opposed to the measure.

“It’s like somehow a cloud of Purple Haze has descended upon this assembly,” Rep. Bryan Barbin, (D) – Johnstown, said.

Most amendments passed Monday did so by a little more than a 2-to-1 margin.

There are still many other amendments to be considered, and the House will continue work on those amendments Tuesday, with supporters hoping for approval as early as Tuesday or Wednesday to send it back to the senate and then the governor.