For Immediate Release: January 5th, 2006
Rhode Island Is 11th State To Legalize Medical Marijuana
Hartford, CT- Green Party leaders welcomed the news that Rhode Island has passed a Medical Marijuana law for the seriously ill. Cliff Thornton, a Green Party candidate for Governor called this passage a compassionate act for people with cancer and AIDS and stated that Connecticut should be the 12th state to pass a Medical Marijuana law.
Thornton, founder of the Efficacy, a national drug reform group, said many people in Connecticut would benefit from such a law as part of a doctor supervised treatment. He said he has spoken to medical patients across the world about this issue, and Connecticut should follow the lead of the other 11 states and countries from across the world.
Thornton called for the other candidates for Governor to clearly state their position on a CT medical marijuana law. Thornton said he will make reforming the drug war a major issue in the up coming state campaign.
Thorton said the Federal government should not arrest any patient that uses medical marijuana for a serious illness.
The Green Party of the United States has a platform position favoring the use of medical marijuana.
Rhode Island on Tuesday became the 11Th state to legalize medical marijuana and the first since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in June that patients who use the drug can still be prosecuted under federal law.
The House overrode a veto by Gov. Don Carrier, 59-13, allowing people with illnesses such as cancer and AIDS to grow up to 12 marijuana plants or buy 2.5 ounces of marijuana to relieve their symptoms. Those who do are required to register with the state and get an identification card.
Federal law prohibits any use of marijuana, but Maine, Vermont, Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington allow it to be grown and used for medicinal purposes.
The U.S. high court ruled June 6 that people who smoke marijuana because their doctors recommend it can still be prosecuted under federal drug laws, even if their states allow it. Federal authorities, however, have conceded they are unlikely to prosecute many medicinal marijuana users.
Tim McKee, CT Green Party National Committee Person, (860) 643-2282 or cell (860) 324-1684
Mike DeRosa, State Co-Chair (860)956-8170 or (860) 919-4042 (cell)