Rell Warms To Medical Marijuana

Rell Warms To Medical Marijuana
Posted by CN Staff on March 23, 2007 at 20:23:36 PT
By Ken Dixon
Source: Connecticut Post
Hartford, Conn. -- Gov. M. Jodi Rell on Friday indicated that she might approve legislation allowing seriously ill patients to grow and smoke marijuana.Rell would not say that she'd veto the medical-marijuana proposal, which proponents believe will pass the House and Senate by comfortable margins after several years of discussion and floor debate.
Rell made her remarks in a wide-ranging interview with the Connecticut Post, in which she said that easing the pain of patients is a laudable goal.She spoke about the legislation hours before TV personality Montel Williams held a news conference asking lawmakers to make Connecticut the 13th state to approve marijuana for medicinal use.The governor also said that with half the legislative session finished, the Democratic majority seems to have time-management problems because she has signed only one piece of legislation.She has not formed a complete opinion on the medical-marijuana bill."I have mixed emotions about it," Rell said, two days after the Judiciary Committee approved it. "I certainly understand it and we want to do anything we can to relieve pain and suffering."She said that the state has had laws on the books for years that allow doctors to prescribe marijuana, but it has essentially been ineffective under the threat of anti-drug penalties. "They don't do it for fear of federal retribution," she said of the medical community.The proposed law would allow patients suffering from a variety of ailments, from glaucoma to multiple sclerosis, cancer and other diseases and a designated caregiver to possess up to an ounce of marijuana, or four small plants without fear of being arrested."I have a little problem with being able to grow marijuana," Rell said. "Where do you get it? I'm not sure you can find a place to grow and get it."The issue, she said, provokes mixed feelings."I'm not sure how I feel," Rell said in the morning interview. "It's one of those very emotional subjects. I just don't know yet."Williams, who for 16 years has hosted a daily TV talk show, said that the pain of MS has made him smoke marijuana every day. His feet were starting to hurt as he stood there, he said."All day long yesterday, I smoked pot," he said in the Legislative Office Building. "I got up this morning before I walked in here, I smoked pot. Now I have to pray that the local law enforcement gives me a right of passage back to my state, because when I walk out of here, I will smoke pot."Montel said that marijuana should not be considered a Schedule One drug such as heroin, when much-more dangerous drugs are listed as Schedule Two substances by federal law enforcement."What is so absolutely egregiously offensive to me is we're actually having a press conference to convince legislators that they need to help," said Williams, a New York resident who cried several times during the news conference.Minority Republican lawmakers on Friday held a news conference opposing the bill.But Rep. Michael P. Lawlor, D-East Haven, co-chairman of the Judiciary Committee, said Friday that he was encouraged by Rell's open mind on medical marijuana."I think by the time it gets to her desk, it'll pass by a 6-to-1 margin," Lawlor said in a phone interview, indicating that the issue has gained momentum. "The arguments against it look more ridiculous as time goes by and the people who want to do it are doing it anyway."Lawlor agreed with Williams that doctors are prescribing drugs that are much worse than marijuana. "How bad can this be?" Lawlor said. "We're not legalizing marijuana, we're saying if your doctor says it's appropriate and you're willing to go down to the state Department of Consumer Protection to register, you shouldn't get arrested."Rell, speaking on the relative lack of action in the current legislative session, said she's "a little disappointed" because major issues including energy and health care have not been settled."Those are going to be big-ticket items, obviously healthcare, so the sooner we kind of see where the direction takes us, what we can do this year, I think the better we can be served when it comes to the budget," Rell said. "I've signed one bill and we're 80 days into it." The session ends at midnight on June 6.Speaker of the House James A. Amann, D-Milford, said in a statement Friday that Rell's "headline" approach to offering legislation has to yield to thoughtful legislative committee and floor debates.Amann criticized her budget for raising the 5 percent personal income tax, providing tax breaks for the wealthy in her proposal to end the property tax on personal vehicles and raising cigarette taxes and bus fares."There are a lot of hard choices to be made, and thankfully for the taxpayers the governor's headline approach to governing will be tempered by a deliberative legislative branch," Amann said.Source: Connecticut Post (Bridgeport, CT)Author: Ken DixonPublished: March 23, 2007Copyright: 2007 MediaNews Group, IncContact: edit ctpost.comWebsite: Articles & Web Sites:Montel Williams Show Montel Williams MS Foundation Montel Williams Makes Emotional Plea for MMJ Panel OKs Medical Marijuana
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Comment #3 posted by whig on March 24, 2007 at 10:07:06 PT
Birds and bees
"I have a little problem with being able to grow marijuana," Rell said. "Where do you get it?"I'm a little concerned about being able to have babies. Where do they come from?
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Comment #2 posted by mayan on March 24, 2007 at 06:04:10 PT
Stupid Humans
"I have a little problem with being able to grow marijuana," Rell said. "Where do you get it? I'm not sure you can find a place to grow and get it."Cannabis was on the earth long before we were and it will likely be here long after we're gone. Get a clue and get over it!THE WAY OUT...Chaos In The New World Order: Military Officer Comes out for 9/11 Truth: Professor disputes official representation on 9/11: 9/11 lie is in critical condition Conspiracy Theory Celebrity Style: 9/11 Truth: Vermont Statehouse:
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Comment #1 posted by Toker00 on March 24, 2007 at 05:22:56 PT
I know! I know!
"I have a little problem with being able to grow marijuana," Rell said. "Where do you get it? I'm not sure you can find a place to grow and get it."From the Earth.Toke.
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