Vape Yes, Smoke No: Minnesota's New Medical-Marijuana Law

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton signed medical-marijuana legislation that bans smoking your medicine. But you can vape it.

You can take pills, and consume or vaporize cannabis oil in a compromise medical-marijuana bill approved by Minnesota's legislature on May 15 and signed by Gov. Mark Dayton on May 29, you just can't smoke the stuff. Sorry patients, no pipes, bongs or joints allowed.

On May 9, the Senate voted 48-18 vote in favor of SF 1641 that allowed up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana to be dispensed to patients at 55 state-authorized treatment centers by next July.

The compromise version significantly reduced the number of centers, or dispensaries, to eight. Two cultivation facilities will provide the marijuana, presumably in the form of oil or perhaps a concentrate like wax. But you would not be allowed to use plant material and simply smoke or vaporize it. The part about pills apparently refers to placing plant material inside capsules; synthetic marijuana in pill form (Marinol) is already avaialable to patients.

The conditions include cancer, glaucoma, HIV, seizures, Tourette's, Crohn's, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, severe spasms and terminal illness.

Some patients feel vaporizers are too difficult to use and expensive than a simple pack of rolling papers or a glass pipe. “Somebody needs to remind this body while it’s congratulating itself that we left 85% of the patients behind, gripes Republican Sen. Brenden Peterson, who originally co-sponsored thee bill, then voted against in committee on May 15. He says the bill as it is now written will serve less thna 5,000 patients, a considerable drop the 38,000 he expected to be treated under th previous language.

Minnesota is now the 22nd state with broad medical-marijuana legislation. This does not include states that have passed those CBD-oil legislation.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.