(St. Louis Post Dispatch) SPRINGFIELD, Ill. • The Illinois House on Thursday narrowly voted down the authorization of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
The bill would have allowed people suffering from chronic pain or nausea caused by certain debilitating conditions to be prescribed a potent dose of cannabis to alleviate the symptoms. It fell four votes short of passage.
The sponsor of the bill, Rep. Lou Lang, D-Skokie, pledged to continue pushing toward legalizing the illicit herb. “I am going to continue to press on — on this particular piece of legislation, or some version of it — until I pass it,” Lang said. “Next year, the year after … I’m a young man. I’ll be here awhile.”
The headline to this story today was “Illinois Legislature shoots down medical marijuana bill“, but when reporting on this yesterday, the Post-Dispatch headline was “Medical marijuana goes up in smoke“. So whomever had “January 6″ and “St. Louis” in the “When and Where Will We Read the First Pot Pun Headline of 2011 Pool” is a winner!
This was a very reasonable bill that was to set up a three-year pilot project. If the dire predictions of Illinois’ opponents of medical marijuana came true, the law would sunset in just three years. It only allowed possession of two ounces and growing of seven plants, which is well within the conservative limits set by all but four of the fifteen medical marijuana states.
The bill also enacted protections for the rights of medical marijuana patients to work, to housing, to drive, and to parent. It would have created a state registry, allowed for dispensaries, and recognized the medical marijuana recommendations and cards from out of state.
The bill had already been passed by the Senate and passage in the House would have sent it to the governor’s desk for signature and we’d have our first medical marijuana state of 2011. Sadly, it is not to be, but for the failure to convince three lawmakers to change their vote to YES.
Activists and supporters, here are the representatives who voted NO (or excused or present) on the medical marijuana bill:
Rep. Acevedo (D); Rep. Bassi (R); Rep. Beaubien (R); Rep. Beiser (D); Rep. Bellock (R); Rep. Biggins (R); Rep. Bost (R); Rep. Bradley (D); Rep. Brady (R); Rep. Brauer (R); Rep. Cavaletto (R); Rep. Coladipietro (R); Rep. Cole (R); Rep. Connelly (R); Rep. Crespo (D); Rep. Cross (R); Rep. Cultra (R); Rep. DeLuca (D); Rep. Durkin (R); Rep. Eddy (R); Rep. Farnham (D); Rep. Fortner (R); Rep. Franks (D); Rep. Gordon, Jehan (D); Rep. Hammond (R); Rep. Hatcher (R); Rep. Hays (R); Rep. Hoffman (D); Rep. Holbrook (D); Rep. Kosel (R); Rep. Leitch (R); Rep. Lyons (D); Rep. Mautino (D); Rep. McAsey (D); Rep. McAuliffe (R); Rep. McCarthy (D); Rep. Mitchell, Bill (R); Rep. Mitchell, Jerry (R); Rep. Moffitt (R); Rep. Mulligan (R); Rep. Osmond (R); Rep. Phelps; Rep. Pihos (R); Rep. Poe (R); Rep. Ramey (R); Rep. Reboletti (R); Rep. Reis (R); Rep. Reitz (D); Rep. Rita (D); Rep. Rose (R); Rep. Sacia (R); Rep. Schmitz (R); Rep. Senger (R); Rep. Sente (D); Rep. Sommer (R); Rep. Stephens (R); Rep. Sullivan (R); Rep. Thapedi (D); Rep. Tracy (R); Rep. Tryon (R); Rep. Watson (R); Rep. Zalewski (D).
That’s 39 Republicans and 19 Democrats if you’re counting… and I am. (To be fair: Rep. Mulligan was an excused absence and Rep. Thapedi voted “present”.)