ATLANTA -- Backers of new medical marijuana laws in Georgia don’t appear to have a friend in Washington named Sonny Perdue. Perdue is the former Georgia governor now running President Trump’s agriculture department.
Growing medical marijuana will be on the Georgia legislature's agenda next year.
It is currently illegal to grow marijuana in Georgia for any reason. And Perdue indicated Wednesday that he thinks it ought to stay that way. "I think it's against federal law," he said when asked his view on a pending resolution to allow cultivation for medical marijuana.
Patients using medical marijuana may legally possess and use it in Georgia, but can't legally obtain it in-state -- and trafficking it from out of state violates federal law. Asked about changing the federal approach to it, Perdue answered "The fact is I think it’s a very slippery slope how you enforce."
"As governor, I was always aware of the federal supremacy law, which meant that federal law preempted state law when when it spoke," Perdue added.
Perdue said that he backs efforts in some states to produce industrial hemp, but with "very tight rules and regulations... to make sure nothing else untoward happens." Georgia is not one of those states.
A resolution introduced last year would change the Georgia constitution to allow medical marijuana cultivation. It would require 2/3 approval of the legislature, followed by voter approval at the polls.