Although marijuana remains prohibited by federal law, an increasing number of states have legalized the drug for medical and recreational use in the past few years. In fact, some politicians are running in the 2018 midterm elections on explicitly pro-marijuana platforms.
This kind of mainstream support for legalization would’ve been practically unthinkable 20 years ago. While the exact regulations vary state-by-state, there are three main statewide stances on marijuana: legalized for recreational and medical use, legalized for only medical use, and completely prohibited in line with federal policy.
Legal Weed for Recreational and Medical Use
Nine states and the District of Columbia have legalized weed for both medical and recreational use. Of this group, Vermont is the only state to have legalized marijuana for recreational use through its legislature (Vermont’s law goes into effect on July 1). The rest legalized weed through a voter referendum.
Some of the states have yet to set up a market for purchasing marijuana. In Washington D.C., for example, you can smoke, possess, and gift marijuana, but you can’t legally buy or sell it.