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Federal Medical Marijuana Bill Adds A Fifth Sponsor


barbara boxer marijuanaRecently Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Rand Paul (R-KY) introduced a medical marijuana bill into the United States Senate. It was the first time that such a bill had been introduced in the Senate. Shortly thereafter a fourth Senator, Dean Heller (R-NV) added his name to the bill. Yesterday a fifth Senator, Barbara Boxer (D-CA) added her name to the bill too. Per the Washington Post:

“Senator Boxer is a strong supporter of California’s medical marijuana law and she believes that patients, doctors and caregivers in states like California should be able to follow state law without fear of federal prosecution,” Zachary Coile, Boxer’s communications director, said in a statement.

According to federal records, Boxer, who is not seeking reelection next year, cosponsored the bill on Tuesday, although her office issued no announcement of her support. Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) also sponsored the bill last week, saying in a news release that “the time has come for the federal government to stop impeding the doctor-patient relationship in states that have decided their own medical marijuana policies.”

Boxer’s support is in line with her past comments on marijuana. In 2010, her campaign manager told Talking Points Memo that Boxer opposed a state legalization measure “because she shares the concerns of police chiefs, sheriffs and other law enforcement officials that this measure could lead to an increase in crime, vehicle accidents and higher costs for local law enforcement agencies.” But, the spokeswoman added, Boxer does support California’s medical marijuana law.

Legendary activist Tom Angell from the Marijuana Majority was also quoted in the article. I saw Tom post the following message on Twitter when the news broke that Barbara Boxer had sponsored the bill:

“Endorsement from Boxer, who’s never done much to for medical marijuana til now, is a sign the dam’s about to break.”

I would completely agree with Tom. I think we are about to see the flood gates open up on this bill, with many more Senators coming out to sponsor this bill. It took a really, really long time to get to this point in marijuana policy. But like the saying goes, ‘good things take time, great things happen all at once.’ I hope that proves to be the case with this bill. Patients’ lives depend on it.


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Johnny Green


  1. refreshing? like smelling feces after being in a sulfur atmosphere? Paul is a one percenter out for the other 1% nothing more.

  2. Us liberals and moderates have multiple sources of information and can actually think for ourselves, thanks very much. When you’re making less than you were twenty years ago, and the company CEO makes thousands of times more then you (and you are fine with that,) you’ve been brainwashed.

  3. It is all well and good that everyone coming out for medical marijuana, as I myself use it to control my PTSD, pain and anger. But I want to see it legal for however your use is, fears of rise in crime is unfounded in my opinion.

  4. How about the other half. A handful of elite, ultra-rich liberals. They have somehow been
    able to convince (brainwash?) about half of ordinary citizens into doing
    their bidding, using fear, hatred and lies as their tools.

    But it may not be totally hopeless. The Koch Bros. and G Soros want to end cannabis prohibition.

    BTW government will not protect us from the owners of government.

  5. Heroin is not “heroin”. Alcohol is more dangerous and at least as addicting. Refer madness is what they do to all drugs. Black Markets are the government’s stock in trade.

    BTW I’m a TEA Party guy. We have way more government than we can afford. Or hadn’t you noticed?

    BTW I doubt if Mr. “list” is a TEA Party guy. He probably works for the g’mint.

  6. Mike in Stone Mtn on

    I agree with ding dong. When conversations started in earnest several years ago about legalizing cannabis/medical marijuana, proponents started posting comments on different websites, Problem was, they would CAPITALIZE EVERY WORD and use profanity (f*** this, f*** that). If you really want to change the positions of people straddling the fence, you’re more apt to be successful with reasoned discourse and valid statistics. Other wise, you come across as what people fear about cannabis.

  7. Tricky Ricky on

    Democrats are stupid.. Republicans are smart. I actually used to think exactly like you, but the Bush years/Tea Party era ruined me from ever registering R ever again. Been reformed since 2006. I don’t how how you do it.

  8. why do folks always put a dumb ass looking hippie or some lame chick blowing smoke when talking about medical cannabis?…ok lot of em out there but doesn’t help the cause!

  9. Tricky Ricky on

    You’re probablu right, but his take is certainly refreshing you have to admit.

  10. ? You have no idea what you are talking about. Are you dating Kevin Sabet? You do agree that cannabis is not Herion, meth, or crack right? Hell cannabis is 114 times safer than alcohol and the federal govt has a patent on the cannabinoids that are neuroprotectants. I don’t see how cannabis can harm your brain if it protects it at the same time. Go away and get on one of your nutso tea party sites. The tea Party is everything that’s wrong with today’s politics. People like you give them a voice. Thanks for that.

  11. Why do so many elected officials promise you a response and then not deliver one? It makes them looks like such jerks, if they can’t keep a simple promise like this, how can you trust them on anything serious?

  12. ĐΣFΣCŦΣĐ on

    While the government still decides my right to medicine, I will say this. “Puff Puff pass! Refuse to wait for your accepted ignorance” If I get busted for smoking a less lethal substance than sugar, so be it.

  13. Bonnie Hagood on

    I have had cancer twice now but live in Wisconsin. I have to take medication that makes me quite ill and has other, nasty side effects, so I have to take more medications that alleviate the side effects. I’m moving to the west coast. My father died of cancer. I’m scared, and I want alternative treatments.

  14. True. The smartest people in the country are a handful of elite, ultra-rich conservatives. They have somehow been able to convince (brainwash?) about half of ordinary citizens into doing their bidding, using fear, hatred and lies as their tools. But if the government you despise is destroyed, who is going to protect you from them?

  15. Reality is for those can[t handle drugs you must be one of em…never called baggers stupid, to good for em.

  16. a bagger is a bagger…Rand Paul is a nut job…weed or no weed…voting for him is like a chicken voting for Colonel Sanders as a business agent

  17. Jefferey Burnside on

    National legalization is in the works it’s about time for a change for the better

  18. realist – the initial findings you are citing, have since been reexamined and found to be flawed. In fact, there are new findings that show that the differences in brains of cannabis users vs. non-users are not indicative of damage or a deficiency; there may actually be some cognitive and IQ benefits. I’m not in favor of giving cannabis to children outside of medical needs, but the reasons many are citing for their support of prohibition are based on old (likely biased) research and not up to date with what current research says.

    Via Washington Post:

    A 2012 Duke University study made international headlines when it
    purported to find a link between heavy marijuana use and IQ decline
    among teenagers. Other researchers questioned the findings almost
    immediately: Columbia University’s Carl Hart noted the very small sample
    of heavy users (38) in the study, leading him to question how generalizable the results were.

    Then, a follow-up study published 6 months later in the same journal
    found that the Duke paper failed to account for a number of confounding
    factors: “Although it would be too strong to say that the results have
    been discredited, the methodology is flawed and the causal inference
    drawn from the results premature,” it concluded.

    Now, a new
    study out from the University College of London provides even stronger
    evidence that the Duke findings were flawed. The study draws on a
    considerably larger sample of adolescents than the Duke research – 2,612
    children born in the Bristol area of the U.K. in 1991 and 1992.
    Researchers examined children’s IQ scores at age 8 and again at age 15,
    and found “no relationship between cannabis use and lower IQ at age 15,”
    when confounding factors – alcohol use, cigarette use, maternal
    education, and others – were taken into account. Even heavy marijuana
    use wasn’t associated with IQ.

    “In particular alcohol use was
    found to be strongly associated with IQ decline,” the authors write. “No
    other factors were found to be predictive of IQ change.”

    #CannaTalkAboutIt — with Jari Seessalmi and Alexis Regados Sansebas.

  19. Michael stover on

    I feel that all states should be legal nationwide. For the simple fact that its a natural herb that was put on this earth. It doesn’t effect nobody’s driving. It don’t even so much as effect people’s mind to do more crimes. If it was legal the crime rate would decrease by a lot.

  20. Diabetes has been labeled a national epidemic. Should we outlaw sugar, and imprison people for possessing it?
    This is America, I’m an adult, I decide what goes in my body.

  21. I’m not from Colorado so I don’t know who Cory Gardner is, but one thing is certain, if he is a democrat he is stupid. Isn’t that one of the requirements before becoming a democrat ?

  22. Before you started calling Tea party members stupid maybe you should do a little looking in the mirror at your own lack of intelligence. Or you can educate yourself by looking at the latest research on the harmful effects being done on the brains of young people under the age of 25. This new research was done by some of the most liberal Universities in the country. I believe Harvard was one of them, can’t really remember for sure the names of the others….{ probably as a result of my smoking pot in my teens and early 20s.} But the info is on the web for anyone who is interested in the harmful effects of pot smoking on young people.

  23. Rand Paul has his own bill with Corey Booker… He’s very much against the Drug War, so you can’t lump him in with the true teabaggers who are too stupid to understand that cannabis is not crack or Herion.

  24. when I did my dime federal time for pot, Barbara helped me personally. I fear the tea baggers in house will slam dunk this bill. It is my hope the misguided individuals who support the tea party and Paul Rand will wake up when this happens. If it passes, I will eat a large plate of crow and be happy to do so.

  25. Jean Anne Lewis on

    Thank you, Barbara Boxer. Now, come on all you other Senators and get on the band wagon. People need this law. Please, don’t let us down.

  26. Jordan Shorette on

    don’t feel bad ive been calling all the nys congressmen and assembly to urge their support for a regulation bill in ny and only about half actually responded the rest were automated emails that never provided a follow up like the email promised.

  27. I don’t know a lot about the others, but Cory Gardner is one of the worst mistakes Colorado has made in decades. I emailed his office, urging him to sign this. Their response was a canned non-statement that said absolutely nothing and didn’t directly address my question. Thanks, rural Colorado voters, for moving our state back into the glorious Reagan years!

  28. I am a little unhappy Ron Wyden, Jeff Merkley, Cory Gardner, Michael Bennet, Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, Patty Murray, and Maria Cantwell did not sign this as well. If you are from a state where it is recreationally legal, shouldn’t you stand with others showing that you respect your states’ constituencies?
    The people forced your hands, shouldn’t that garner some level of respect for them, or does contempt for the little person set in even deeper, knowing we cannot all be lead where they wish?
    This is just a no brainer to sign on if you want to catch the surge that is a pot using voter base.

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