MPs block Norman Lamb's bid to legalise cannabis

Norman Lamb

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

A bid to legalise cannabis by a Liberal Democrat MP has been blocked by MPs.

Former Health Minister, Norman Lamb, brought forward a 10 Minute Rule Bill on the issue, claiming current laws meant "billions of pounds" went to organised crime units.

His Cannabis Legalisation and Regulation Bill failed to pass the first stage and was blocked by 66 no votes to 52 yes votes.

 

 

Mr Lamb claimed it was a "dreadful hypocrisy" that alcohol was legal, and a drug that could be used for pain relief was not.

Addressing the House of Commons, he said: "Isn't there a dreadful hypocrisy that we allow our drug of choice whilst criminalising people who use another, less dangerous drug - many for the relief of pain.

"My Bill offers a more rational alternative to this mess, with strict regulation of the growing sale and marketing of cannabis - we can at last start to protect children and teenagers."

 

'War on cannabis'

Steve Double opposed the Bill to legalise the drug. Image: UK Parliament

The Bill was blocked by a majority of 14 Conservative MPs, with Steve Double MP labelling the drug "dangerous".

Mr Double said legalising the drug would be "send the wrong message" and giving up the "war on cannabis".

 

 

"We are clearly in the midst of a war on drugs, but I would say we do not win the war by raising the white flag and giving up and surrendering - no war has ever been won by surrendering," he said.

"We need to do better for our young people, but giving up the war on cannabis is not the way to achieve that."

In November this year, it became legal for doctors to prescribe cannabis products to patients for the first time in England, Wales and Scotland.