The Oklahoma Senate Health & Human Services Committee decided to pass a very restrictive "Medical Marijuana" bill, today. The biggest complaint by those opposing the bill is that the bill is too restrictive and carries far too harsh of felony penalties for those who allow non-patients to access the medicines.
Senator Frank Simpson strongly criticized the chairman for pushing a matter which has earned a direct vote of the people, this June. He also expressed earlier regrets that the bill (authored by committee chairman, Ervin Yen, on behalf of the State Dept. of Mental Health & substance Abuse Services) excludes several illnesses from the list of authorized use diagnoses. Simpson has long been a champion of the state's military veterans as well as the mentally ill. Many veterans are seeking treatment for severe Post Traumatic Stress and Panic Attacks with Cannabis Medicines by traveling to other states where physicians are free to direct the treatment, using Cannabis medications.
Senator Pugh expressed serious problems with the Senate being out of touch with the citizens and said the issue belongs to the people. He said the senate will be able to 'tweak' the regulations next January, after the people have spoken.
Senator Dave Rader gave a qualified 'yes' vote, stipulating that the bill must address more issues in committee at a later date, or he will vote against it on the Senate floor.
Senator Ikley-Freeman expressed serious disappointment that the bill creates new felony law where the statutes currently assign a misdemeanor classification.
Senators; Silk, David, Standridge, & Yen, were also among those voting for the most restrictive version of medical marijuana.
In other committee news, the committee soundly rejected yet another of Chairman Yen's efforts to force more parents to impose more vaccinations, with less options for objecting to the injections.