Override Lynch on Medical Pot Bill
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Override Lynch on Medical Pot Bill
Posted by CN Staff on October 27, 2009 at 05:54:51 PT
Source: Nashua Telegraph
New Hampshire -- When Gov. John Lynch vetoed legislation earlier this summer that would have made New Hampshire the 14th state in the nation to legalize marijuana for medical use, one of the reasons cited was that it would place the state in conflict with federal law. And despite our stated support for the legislation (HB 648), he was quite accurate on that point.But when state lawmakers convene at the Statehouse on Wednesday to act on the governor’s veto of this and other bills, the political landscape will have changed quite a bit in the past three months – both in Washington and here in the Granite State.
First, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. announced last week that individuals who use medical marijuana or those who distribute it in accordance with state laws should not be targeted for prosecution.“It will not be a priority to use federal resources to prosecute patients with serious illnesses or their caregivers who are complying with state laws on medical marijuana,” Holder wrote in a statement accompanying a memorandum from Deputy Attorney General David Ogden to federal prosecutors in those states that permit the use of medical marijuana under certain conditions.If that weren’t enough to perhaps influence the tenor of debate Wednesday, the state’s new U.S. attorney took that memorandum one step further.Speaking to The Associated Press last week, U.S. Attorney John Kacavas said his office doesn’t intend to prosecute individuals using small amounts of marijuana for medical purposes even if lawmakers fail to override the governor’s veto.While none of this means, as Concord Monitor cartoonist Mike Marland suggests in the accompanying editorial cartoon, that a legislative override is a sure thing, it might just be enough to influence a few key votes, particularly in the Senate.During the past session, both the House of Representatives (232-108) and the Senate (14-10) voted to approve legislation sponsored by Rep. Evalyn Merrick, D-Lancaster, that would permit the use of small amounts of marijuana for medicinal purposes if recommended by a physician.The legislation underwent numerous changes along the way, including the creation of three “compassion centers” where the marijuana would be grown, a narrowing of the chronic and terminal illnesses that would qualify, and requiring caregivers and compassion center workers to subject themselves to federal and state criminal background checks.Nonetheless, Lynch vetoed the bill July 10 on the grounds that it still had “too many defects to move forward.”While attendance could be a factor Wednesday, it would appear the House has the necessary two-thirds majority to override the governor’s veto. The Senate, however, is another story.Supporters need 16 votes in the 24-member Senate to deal Lynch the first override of his career, two more than they received in the initial vote. In short, they need to pick up the vote of the only Democrat to vote against the bill – Sen. Betsi DeVries, D-Manchester, who also represents Litchfield – as well as any one of the Republican senators.As we pointed out in a previous editorial, some of these GOP senators represent Greater Nashua: Peter Bragdon, of Milford; Sharon Carson, of Londonderry, whose district includes Hudson; and Sheila Roberge, of Merrimack, who also represents Lyndeborough, Merrimack and Mont Vernon.So we specifically reach out to them today to urge them to reconsider their original votes Wednesday – not just in response to the evolving federal position as stated by Holder and Kacavas, but because it is the right and compassionate thing to do for their constituents stricken with cancer, multiple sclerosis, HIV or other debilitating diseases.Or ask yourself this: If it can bring some relief to what’s left of their quality of life, why deny it?Source: Nashua Telegraph, The (Nashua, NH)Published:  Tuesday, October 27, 2009Copyright: 2009 Telegraph Publishing CompanyContact: letters nashuatelegraph.comURL: http://www.nashuatelegraph.comCannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archives
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Comment #3 posted by runruff on October 27, 2009 at 09:21:25 PT
I wrote this 10 years ago.
I updated the 2009 part but I didn't add the extra 10 years so it is really 160 years now not 150 years as it was in 1999.
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Comment #2 posted by runruff on October 27, 2009 at 08:14:15 PT
Gold Rush of 1849-2009, 150 years!
One hundred and fifty years ago Levi Strauss came to the California gold fields to make his fortune. He was going to make tents out of hemp sailcloth. The only trouble was the weather was so fine hardly anyone bought his tents. So the future of tents became past-tents.He then tried a new way of making pants out of hemp sailcloth, holding them together with rivets. One hundred fifty years later the hemp is the gold! Cannabis/hemp has started a modern gold rush to the west coast! People travel here during harvest just to get in on some good wages for a change. People are getting rich selling everything pertainable to this industry.150 years later the gold rush is on for the Green Gold!
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on October 27, 2009 at 06:09:22 PT
Related Article From The Nashua Telegraph
‘America’s Best Idea’ Meets One of The WorstTuesday, October 27, 2009URL:
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