Flanked by a kid wearing a “420 Autism” tee, on Tuesday Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed into effect House Bill 1028, which legalizes medical marijuana treatment for autism. “OK kids, that’s how we make a law,” he told the families and advocates who had gathered for the occasion.
But in fact, the story of this bill was much more complex than Polis’ pen flourish. A similar bill passed both the House and Senate last year, but was rejected by then-Governor John Hickenlooper, who was not convinced that scientific data existed that backed up the legislation’s application to young people living with autism. “I haven’t found a pediatrician yet who thinks it’s a good idea to sign this bill,” Hickenlooper commented at the time, adding that certain autism groups’ silence on the bill “speaks volumes.