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Politics

Medical Marijuana Backers Trumpet GOP Senator's Support of Amendment 2

September 12, 2016 - 5:30pm
Jeff Brandes
Jeff Brandes

With Pinellas County state Sen. Jeff Brandes becoming the first Republican in the Florida Senate to back Amendment 2, supporters of medical marijuana are trumpeting the endorsement. 

At the end of last week, Politico reported that Brandes was supporting Amendment 2 which expands medical marijuana in the Sunshine State. 

“The Legislature screwed up the opportunity in the medical marijuana law. What you’ve seen them do is create a situation where only a handful of families can get wealthy,” Brandes told Politico.“And the Legislature believes it knows better than physicians on how to treat patients. And the only way we’re going to see meaningful change in that area is to put it in the Constitution.”

Ben Pollara, the campaign manager of United for Care, which is spearheading Amendment 2, cheered the news on Monday.

“Senator Brandes has, for years, made significant efforts to secure access to patients through the legislative system,” Pollara said. “That he is supporting the revised version of Amendment 2 is a big deal, and a signal that this is non-partisan issue. Passing Amendment 2 is about helping the hundreds of thousands of very ill people in Florida find relief through another option with the consent of their doctor." 

Last November, Brandes filed a bill in the Legislature to expand medical marijuana in Florida. 

“This legislation recognizes the growing support in Florida for the medicinal use of marijuana as an additional option for physicians in the treatment of their patients,” Brandes said when he brought out that bill. "We build on the best practices of the 23 other states that have legalized medical marijuana. The bill creates a responsible regulatory framework, offers patients with debilitating conditions access to this course of treatment, and it focuses funding on valuable medical research."

For Amendment 2 to be adopted, it will need 60 percent support at the November ballot. Polls show it is currently in good shape. A poll from Public Policy Polling (PPP) released last week found 70 percent of voters backed Amendment 2 while 23 percent opposed it. Democrats backed the proposal 81 percent to 13 percent. Amendment 2 also did well with voters outside the major parties as 70 percent supported it and 21 of them opposed it. Republicans were more divided but a majority--55 percent--backed the proposal while 38 percent were against it. 

But, back in 2014, polls showed a similar proposal--also entitled Amendment 2--doing well though it faded in the final weeks before the ballot and fell short at 58 percent on Election Day. 

Comments

The issue of " not getting high " while using marijuana. To many un informed the thought of getting " high " scares them to the point of hysteria. These who are terrified of that " high " believe that getting high will lead to violent erratic behavior outside of one's self control. These poor uninformed paranoidals need to be de - educated from the " Reedlfer Masness " They have been brainwashed to believe. A comprehensive mass education of the fact of marijuana's benefits should be part of every schools curriculum. We have to move socially from Reeder Madnesses Daek Ages.

It is deeply disturbing that there are so many Floridians who are, or seem to be, uneducated in the medical marijuana issue. Medical marijuana has absolutely NO so called buzz or highs. In fact, the pain medication currently supported by many, including the Federal Government, are habitual, dangerous,(when used stupidly), harmful, and so on. Medical marijuana does NOT give anyone a buzz or even a high. It provides a soothing relief of pain that many Americans, including veterans, could use. IF voted down, this will prove to be a major win for the illegal marijuana trade, with prices soaring and more people being harmed. Myself, I do not want to be on a constant buzz or high and would be so thankful for just relief of the pain in my legs. GO TRUMP!!

About time a Republican actually follows his heart and what are supposed to be Conservative values. Those of less goverment intrusion and freedom. Thank you Senator Brandes. YES on 2. ForThePatients!

C breeze, you make yourself look foolish when you blurt out NO ON 2, when you make no argument as to why you against helping sick people get treatment. Probably a big pharma fan, amirite?

Obviously Senator Brandes is unfamiliar with the proverbial "kiss of death", made famous in the "Godfather movies" and its parallel "political" connotation; Voters are not so self-serving as your own self Senator... you have just "short-stopped" your tenure and position merely by urging support of such detrimental legislation upon Florida's citizens; you have 'identified' yourself as the "face" of ANY and ALL future problems arising due to such legislation (should it survive). NO TO AMENDMENT TWO !!!!

You are on the wrong side of history. You need to educate yourself about medical marijuana. You sound ridiculous.

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