Pubdate: Tue, 30 Nov 2010
Source: News-Gazette, The (Champaign, IL)
Copyright: 2010 The News-Gazette
Author: Tom Kacich


SPRINGFIELD - Legislation that would have legalized marijuana for
medical use in Illinois fell seven votes short of the 60 needed for
passage Tuesday afternoon.

The legislation got 53 "yes" votes, among them from Reps. Naomi
Jakobsson, D-Urbana, and Bill Black, R-Danville.

Fifty-nine lawmakers voted against the bill, among them Reps. Shane
Cultra, R-Onarga, and Chapin Rose, R-Mahomet.

The House debated the controversial measure for nearly 90 minutes,
although no East Central Illinois lawmakers were among them.

"This bill is not about 16-year-olds looking to get a cheap, quick
high. This is about people who are in debilitating pain, people that
have a minimum quality of life, people that are terminally ill,
looking for compassion, not a high. Looking for relief, not a high,"
said Rep. John Fritchey, D-Chicago.

But Rep. Sandy Cole, R-Grayslake, said the legislation does not
adequately address use of cannabis for medical purposes.

"This bill talks about how much pot you can have in your possession.
It doesn't talk about disease management. It talks about how much dope
you can have."

The bill was placed on "postponed consideration," meaning it can be
called again for a floor vote today or tomorrow.
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