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Matthew Mientka, Medical Daily
Medical marijuana advocates recently began targeting Congressional holdouts who still support federal intervention in states’ rights to regulate the medical use of the drug.
Proponents of greater access to medical marijuana were emboldened after a Republican-controlled House voted 219-189 to proscribe the government from enforcing federal marijuana laws that conflict with rapidly changing state laws supported by majorities of the American public. Seventeen Democrats joined the nearly three-quarters of Republican congressmen who voted against the provision.
Now, progressives are targeting Reps. Andy Harris (R-Md.) and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) with ads on MSNBC from Americans for Safe Access. Kris Hermes, a spokesman for the progressive group, told The Huffington Post that the attack on Wasserman makes sense, especially given that over 80 percent of Floridians support medical marijuana, according to a recent Quinnipiac poll.
"The reason for these two particular members of Congress has to do with their especially outspoken opposition to medical marijuana, despite its popular support in their districts," he said. "Although the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment was passed with a solid majority, the influence of these two elected officials is significant, and their efforts to derail a measure supported by the vast majority of Americans is troubling and must be confronted."
Following this initial media exposure, the new ads will run during the next several days on MSNBC to remind voters how both Harris and Wasserman Schultz continue to oppose legalization of medical marijuana. The Florida Congresswoman spoke on the House floor in late May against the bill sponsored by California Reps. Dana Rohrabacher and Sam Farr to deny DEA funding for operations against state-regulated medical marijuana.
"It's the camel's nose under the tent," Harris said, according to the National Journal. The Congressman cited a report published this week by the DEA calling medical marijuana “a means to an end” in gaining legalization for recreational purposes.