Pubdate: Mon, 09 Jan 2006
Source: San Diego Union Tribune (CA)
Copyright: 2006 Union-Tribune Publishing Co.
Note: Does not print LTEs from outside it's circulation area.
Cited: Marijuana Policy Project
Cited: San Diego County Board of Supervisors
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)


Supervisors Want To Overturn Law

Two out of three San Diego County voters support the state law
allowing sick and dying patients to use marijuana, according to a poll
scheduled to be released today. An even wider majority said county
supervisors should not spend public money trying to overturn the law.

A Washington, D.C., advocacy group called the Marijuana Policy Project
commissioned the poll after the San Diego County Board of Supervisors
refused late last year to implement the state medical marijuana law.

County supervisors plan to sue the state later this month to try to
overturn the law. California voters approved the law in 1996, but it
has been held up in courts for years because marijuana remains illegal
under federal law.

The telephone poll was conducted Jan. 3 and 4 by the opinion research
firm Evans/McDonough Co. It asked 500 registered voters -- 100 in each
supervisorial district -- to answer a series of questions regarding
medical marijuana and other issues. The poll had a margin of error of
4.38 percent.

County Supervisor Dianne Jacob dismissed the survey as politically

According to the survey, 67 percent of San Diego County voters said
they support Proposition 215, the landmark initiative approved by
voters a decade ago. More decisively, the pending lawsuit "is wasting
taxpayers' money," 80 percent of respondents said.

"Every city, county, state and national poll conducted in the U.S.
over the last 25 years has shown that a clear majority of voters
support legal medical marijuana, and San Diego County is no
exception," Rob Kampia of the Marijuana Policy Project said in a statement.

"The supervisors pursue this suit at their own peril."

Despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last summer that upheld the
federal government's authority to prosecute marijuana users,
California law requires counties to issue identification to registered
medical marijuana patients.

A majority of San Diego County supervisors -- Pam Slater-Price, Bill
Horn and Jacob -- voted last month to reject that mandate. Instead,
they announced they would seek to overturn the state's medical
marijuana law in court.

Jacob questioned the survey's results.

"This is a poll bought and paid for by a special-interest group with a
clear-cut agenda," Jacob said. "The results aren't credible. More
importantly, the county's legal challenge isn't about popular opinion.
It's about resolving a clash of state and federal laws."

Slater-Price and Horn did not return telephone calls Friday regarding
the survey results. 
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MAP posted-by: Richard Lake