Cancer patients swing Senate panel vote on medical marijuana

April 05, 2005

Associated Press, KAAL_TV

ST. PAUL (AP) - A Minnesota Senate committee has voted to allow medical use of marijuana.

DFL Senator Steve Kelley of Hopkins is the bill's sponsor. It also would prevent arrests of people who use marijuana to treat debilitating condition.

The Senate panel endorsed the bill after hearing from cancer patients who said marijuana is the only pain medication that's worked for them.

Supporters don't expect the legislation to become law this year. That's because Governor Pawlenty said he would be unlikely to sign such a bill.

Even if the measure passed, medical marijuana users would remain vulnerable to prosecution -- because possession of the drug is illegal under federal law.

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