NC Republicans Kill Medical Marijuana Bill Because it Had too Much Support
Posted by Marijuana Doctors on 02/25/2013 in Medical Marijuana Laws
North Carolina Lawmakers Downvoted Bill Because of Too Many Phone Calls
The North Carolina Medical Cannabis Act (House Bill 84) introduced by Representative Kelly Alexander (D emocrat), would have allowed patients suffering from a debilitating medical condition to have access to medical marijuana in North Carolina. Patients would be permitted to possess up to 24 ounces of usable medical marijuana and cultivate a garden of up to 250 square feet. The bill would have also provided for a system of medical marijuana dispensaries.
Instead of allowing the bill to expire in committee, the GOP-controlled North Carolina House killed the medical marijuana legalization bill after lawmakers complained that backers of the measure were bothering them with requests for their support. Instead of merely letting the bill expire in committee as is typically the case with bills that won’t pass, the GOP house voted to give it an unfavorable report.
By voting the bill “unfavorable”, it ensures that the topic could not be brought up again this session. According to House rules, when a bill is given an unfavorable report, “the contents of that bill or the principal provisions of its subject matter shall not be considered in any other measure originating in the Senate or originating thereafter in the House.”
“We did it to be done with it, so people could move on for the session,” Rep. Paul “Skip” Stam (Republican) told WRAL TV in Raleigh. He said lawmakers were being “harassed” with phone calls and emails about medical marijuana.
The committee only listened to public comments about the bill for 20 minutes before voting. Catherine Lyles, a 51-year-old brain cancer survivor testified before lawmakers, telling them that marijuana had allowed her to regain her appetite after treatment. But the thought of medical marijuana helping patients did not seem to touch the hearts of the North Carolina lawmakers that down voted the bill. Sitting atop their perches looking down upon those that seek a hint of relief from their pain, the North Carolina Lawmakers have chosen to ignore the issue. It was obviously a power move by lawmakers as medical marijuana advocates reportedly heavily outnumbered the single opponent who appeared at the hearing, but lawmakers were apparently unmoved by the showing of support.
Well, I say, that these lawmakers will have a public backlash. The great people of North Carolina and those that believe in the freedom to use medical marijuana will not lay idle any more. It is a shocking level of disregard for the seriousness of their jobs as well as the public will, no matter what the subject of the legislation is. This should not be permitted.
What’s funny is they actually think this will stop the phone calls and emails. Instead let’s turn up the pressure. Below are the names, emails and phone numbers of all the members on the North Carolina Rules Committee with Paul “Skip Harassment” Stam at the top of the list.
Share this with everyone you know whether they are sympathetic to the cause of medical marijuana or not. Urge them to contact these representatives to demand fair a hearing for H.B. 84 and an up-or-down vote in the General Assembly.
Paul Stam – Vice Chairman
Tom Moore – Chairman
Justin Burr – Vice Chairman