Marijuana Groups Survey Says Voters Oppose Lawsuit

Marijuana Groups Survey Says Voters Oppose Lawsuit
Posted by CN Staff on January 10, 2006 at 07:03:47 PT
By Gig Conaughton, Staff Writer 
Source: North County Times 
San Diego, CA -- Most county voters support California's 9-year-old medical marijuana law and oppose San Diego County supervisors' plan to sue to overturn it, according to a survey released Monday. In addition, the survey said most respondents would vote to replace the supervisors over the issue.The $15,000 telephone survey of 500 randomly selected county voters ---- 100 from each of the county's five districts ---- was commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project, a national nonprofit group that wants to decriminalize all marijuana use.
County supervisors immediately suggested the survey was politically motivated by a pro-marijuana organization, and repeated that federal law still considers marijuana an illegal drug without medical benefit, and should take precedence over California's law. "What do they say? 'Figures lie and liars figure?'" said Supervisor Pam Slater-Price, who has served as the board's chairwoman for the last year. "My first reaction is they've asked more people who support marijuana use."Marijuana Policy Project officials, meanwhile, said the survey was an objective and valid sampling of the county's 1.379 million registered voters. They also said the group was considering mounting an initiative drive in San Diego County to ask voters to impose term limits on county supervisors. Sixty-two percent of respondents said they'd vote to replace their supervisors if they knew they supported overturning the medical marijuana law."The message is very clear," project spokesman Bruce Mirken said, "the voters don't want the board of supervisors to pursue this (lawsuit). They're comfortable with Proposition 215 (California's medical marijuana law). And they feel that rather than conducting a war on patients, the board should be defending the patients there are in the county."Supervisors announced in December that they planned to sue the state to overturn Prop. 215, California's "Compassionate Use Act."The law, passed in 1996, said "seriously ill Californians have the right to obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes" when recommended by a doctor.San Diego County supervisors ---- who have steadfastly called the law a "bad" one that could increase marijuana abuse ---- voted in November to defy a separate state law that ordered the county to create an identification card and registration program for medical marijuana users.In December, the board voted unanimously in closed session to sue to overturn Prop. 215 itself, on the basis that it should be pre-empted by federal law.Slater-Price and the other supervisors said they could not in good conscience support Prop. 215 because federal drug enforcement agents could still arrest and prosecute California residents regardless of the state's law."I feel derelict in my duty to tell you it's OK, to do something when you could then go out and be arrested," Slater-Price said.In fact, federal agents raided 13 San Diego-area marijuana dispensaries Dec. 12, including two in North County, and seized large quantities of the drug, computers and records in one of the largest crackdowns of its kind in the state.Federal officials said the dispensaries were "fronts" for distributing the drug.Marijuana advocacy groups called the raids outrageous, cowardly acts of an administration out of touch with voters.The Marijuana Policy Project's survey, released Monday, reported:- 67 percent of respondents supported Prop. 215.- 70 percent said the county should follow state law and create the identification card program.- 78 percent of respondents said supervisors "should not be wasting taxpayer money suing the state to try to overturn California's medical marijuana law."However, some of those numbers could be misleading.Sal Vescera, an analyst with the opinion and research firm that conducted the survey ---- Seattle-based Evans McDonough Company ---- said the survey had a 4.38 percent margin of error, meaning the real percentages could swing by that margin in either direction.In addition, the overall percentages of support were combinations of strong and mild support.For example, of the 67 percent who reported supporting Prop. 215, only 44 percent "strongly" supported the law. Another 23 percent "somewhat" supported the law, yielding the 67 percent overall support.Likewise, 50 percent strongly agreed that supervisors should create the identification card program; while 20 percent "somewhat agreed."However, 62 percent said supervisors "should not be wasting taxpayer money suing the state to overturn California's medical marijuana law. Sixteen percent "somewhat agreed."Complete Title: Marijuana Group's Survey Says Voters Oppose Supervisors' LawsuitSource: North County Times (CA)Author: Gig Conaughton, Staff Writer Published: January 10, 2006 Copyright: 2006 North County Times Contact: editor nctimes.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Marijuana Policy Project Diego County Goes on Warpath Time for Patriots To Rebel To Sue To Overturn Marijuana Law
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on January 11, 2006 at 09:36:30 PT
Snipped Source: Medical Marijuana Laws Targeted 
By Leslie Wolf BranscombJanuary 11, 2006 Medical marijuana advocates yesterday urged county supervisors to drop their plans for a lawsuit challenging the state law that allows the ill to use pot with a doctor's approval. But to no avail. Counsel John Sansone said the suit would probably be filed next week. 
Several dozen pro-marijuana activists held a rally outside the county administration building before arriving en masse at the Board of Supervisors' first meeting of the year. About half a dozen spoke to the supervisors. Their presentation was not on the agenda, so the board was prohibited from discussing it or taking action. That was fine with the protesters. "All I'm here to do is introduce myself to them," said Rudy Reyes, before the meeting began. "I'd like to ask them, 'Hey, where's the compassion?' "I'm here to see why they're making these medical decisions for me," said Reyes, who was severely burned in the Cedar Fire in October 2003. "They're not doctors." Mark-Robert Bluemel, Reyes' attorney, said legal action against the county may be "in the works." "The bottom line is we have a county government that refuses to comply with the law," Bluemel said. "It's baffling." Snipped:Complete Article:
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Comment #5 posted by siege on January 10, 2006 at 10:03:12 PT
pam.slater greg.cox bill.horn
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Comment #4 posted by Toker00 on January 10, 2006 at 09:46:28 PT
Politicians are in far a rude awakening.
All these pols live in a different world from the rest of us. They believe their laws will protect them FROM us. One day, they will be going about their merry fascist way, and when they open their doors to go home, we'll be standing there. We won't move to one side, and we won't back down. They will face Us, the Truth, and Reality all at one time. Most will faint, or at least have to sit down. They are going to say: "You figured us out, huh?"Wage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW! 
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Comment #3 posted by Storm Crow on January 10, 2006 at 09:30:16 PT
What part of the word "random" doesn't she understand? If they had picked and chose interviewees from the ASA membership list, her comment would have made sense. I guess she never has looked at the results of various polls that show between 60 to 90 percent (depending on location) of the American people support medical marijuana. Either figure is a majority of the people. She is a public servant, isn't she? I think she needs a wake up call. Anyone have her email address?
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Comment #2 posted by runderwo on January 10, 2006 at 09:27:11 PT
What the hell is up with that quote anyway. Is she just stating the obvious or what?
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Comment #1 posted by mayan on January 10, 2006 at 07:56:57 PT
"What do they say? 'Figures lie and liars figure?'" said Supervisor Pam Slater-Price, who has served as the board's chairwoman for the last year. "My first reaction is they've asked more people who support marijuana use."You just put your foot in your mouth, honey. Good luck finding another job!
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