Murphy sponsors medical marijuana bill because of father’s agony

April 14, 2007

Brian Voerding and Britt Johnsen, Winona Daily News (MN)

A bill to legalize marijuana for medical use is advancing through the Minnesota Legislature, though a final outcome is still uncertain. Sen. Steve Murphy, DFL-Red Wing, is one of the Senate bill’s chief authors. He became a supporter after watching his father, who died of cancer, endure nine months of severe pain. He has argued against beliefs that the legislation will create opportunities for drug abuse, pointing out that it only applies to a small number of people with chronic pain.

“It is not going to happen,” Murphy told the Senate’s Judiciary Committee Tuesday, which narrowly approved the bill. “I’m bucking the system on this one because traditional medicine hasn’t worked for them.”

The bill would prohibit medical marijuana from being grown in the home. Only a registered nonprofit organization could grow the plants.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty has said he will veto any medical marijuana bill.

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