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Medical Marijuana Bill Passes House With Support From Stockman, Many Texas Democrats

The General

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Kinky Friedman might not have won his election, but some Texans in Washington signaled their support for medicinal marijuana very early Friday morning. During a late-night vote, past midnight in Washington, the House passed an amendment that barred the Drug Enforcement Agency from raiding medicinal marijuana dispensaries in states that deem them legal. The bill passed with majority Democratic support— only 49 Republicans voted for the measure. Out of the Texans in Congress, Clear Lake Rep. Steve Stockman was the only Republican to vote for the measure. He was a co-sponsor of the amendment and supported pro-medicinal marijuana measures in the past.

"The federal government is a creation of, and subservient to, the states" Donny Ferguson, a Stockman advisor, said by email. "The federal government should respect state laws on hemp, cannabis and marijuana. This is just one issue where the federal government has surpassed its constitutional limits." All of the Texas Democrats supported the bill, besides Laredo Rep. Henry Cuellar, Alpine Rep. Pete Gallego, and Mercedes Rep. Ruben Hinojosa. Medicinal marijuana is legal at the state level in 22 states and the District of Columbia, but is still illegal federally. The federal government classifies the drug as Schedule I, which is reserved for drugs that have no medical benefits. However, proponents of medical marijuana say that it can be used to treat a host of illnesses.

The contradiction between federal and state law currently means that while state police in those 22 states cannot arrest a licensed medical marijuana distributor if they are following state laws, the federal government can still theoretically arrest them for federal drug crimes. If this amendment is passed by the Senate and ultimately becomes law, that could change. This measure would not exempt recreational marijuana use in Washington and Colorado, where voters made it legal under state law. If this became law, DEA officers would still be free to enforce federal drug laws in those states, provided they do not infringe on medical marijuana distributors who are following all state laws. Medicinal marijuana is illegal in Texas, but Gov. Rick Perry turned heads when he defended states' rights to legalize marijuana in January. He also showed support for decriminalizing possession, reducing the punishment for being caught with small amounts


News Moderator - The General @ 420 MAGAZINE ®
Source: Trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com
Author: Ben Kamisar
Contact: Dallas Morning News
Website: Medical marijuana bill passes House with support from Stockman, many Texas Democrats


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Re: Medical Marijuana Bill Passes House With Support From Stockman, Many Texas Democr

The ultimate solution is to get cannabis moved to Schedule III.
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