Dover, DE — On Tuesday, the Delaware Senate voted in favor (16-4) of HB 1, a bill that would legalize possession of up to one ounce of cannabis for adults. Additionally, the chamber voted in favor (15-5) HB 2, a bill that would set up a regulatory framework for adult-use cannabis sales.
HB 1 and HB 2 have been approved by the House of Representatives in supermajority votes of 28-13 and 27-13, respectively. Both bills will now proceed to Governor John Carney’s desk for his consideration.
“With this latest vote, the fight to legalize cannabis in Delaware is nearing the finish line. Cannabis policy reform has garnered widespread support among Delawareans for years. Meanwhile, neighboring states have already made the move to legalize cannabis. It’s encouraging to see the legislature advance these bills with veto-proof majorities. We hope Gov. Carney will heed the will of the people and allow Delaware to become the 22nd state to legalize cannabis. Any further delay to cannabis legalization would be a detriment to the state," Olivia Naugle, senior policy analyst at the Marijuana Policy Project.
In 2022, cannabis legalization fell short when Gov. Carney became the first Democratic governor to veto a cannabis legalization bill and the House of Representatives failed to override the decision. Following today’s vote, the margins of both chambers would be enough to override a veto.
Polling has shown that a supermajority of Delaware voters support legalizing cannabis. To date, 21 states have passed laws to legalize cannabis for adult use, including neighboring New Jersey and Maryland. Meanwhile, several bills to legalize adult-use cannabis are working their way through state legislatures such as Minnesota and New Hampshire.