Criminal Justice committee sends LD1453 a Marijuana bill to House with 7-3 vote

May 12th, 2011 by admin Leave a reply »

Portland Representative Diane Russell presented her case yesterday to the Criminal Justice Committee in Augusta for the legalization and taxation of marijuana. The committee members however did not agree with her argument or the public who testified in favor of passage as they voted it out of committee with a 7-3 vote of ‘Ought not to Pass’. There is still a possibility that Maine voters will get to vote for legalization in the near future.

One amendment that was offered by Rep. Russell was that even if the committee, House and Senate opted to pass this bill, that it should also be sent out to the voters for ratification. She said’”This would give the public an opportunity to weigh in on this in the polls and show their support or lack of support for legalization.”

Russell also stated ‘”This bill changes the paradigm of how we look at drug policy. It’s time to see these policies through the lens of public health and not through the lens of the criminal justice system.”

Many supporters from all walks of life testified as to why the bill should be passed and their reasoning was as broad as the walks of life they represented. There were people from Law enforcement who spoke for and against the bill as well. Jack Cole, the co-founder of LEAP (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition) testified that is his entire career he had arrested as many as 1000 people for marijuna. He said’,”You can overcome an addiction, but you can’t overcome a

Article source: http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-portland-me/criminal-justice-committee-sends-ld1453-a-marijuana-bill-to-house-with-7-3-vote

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