Lawmakers Push to Legalize Medical Marijuana in Pennsylvania

May 4, 2010 – Pennsylvania Sen. Daylin Leach introduced a measure to authorize physicians to prescribe marijuana for medical purposes today. Leach, D-Delaware County, said his proposal would limit medical marijuana use to a specific list of diseases that have proven to be reactive to the drug, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, diabetes and glaucoma.

Leach’s bill mirrors a proposal already introduced in the state House.  Advocates point to 14 other states already allow medical marijuana use, including New Jersey, which approved it earlier this year.  Twelve other states have legislation or voter initiatives pending to allow it.

Under the proposal, approved patients would be given an identification card and could grow up to six plants at their home or purchase a limited amount from state-regulated centers.  The marijuana would be subject to sales tax.

Leach said it is unfair that people with debilitating illnesses cannot take advantage of a treatment that he said is effective, not physically addictive and does not threaten overdose but they can take prescription medications that he called more deadly, like OxyContin. “Current policy is nothing short of state-mandated cruelty,” he said.

Several doctors and other advocates gathered at the Capitol in Harrisburg with Leach and state Rep. Mark Cohen, D-Philadelphia, who sponsored the House version of the proposal.  Source.

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