Pubdate: Sat, 24 Aug 2002
Source: Waukesha Freeman (WI)
Copyright: 2002 The Waukesha Freeman
Contact: (262) 542-8259
Author: Gary Storck


Regarding Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett's letter 
about his voting record on abortion, "Barrett sets record straight" (August 
13). Let's look at where he stands on another issue that is both pro-choice 
and pro-life: allowing the sick and dying to use medical marijuana.

Readers may recall a February 2002 Chamberlain Research poll found that 
over 80% of Wisconsinites back the legislature passing a law to allow 
patients to use this therapy under a doctor's care.

Of the major candidates for governor, Ed Thompson, Kathleen Falk, Jim 
Young, and Jim Doyle have all expressed support for medical marijuana. Of 
these, Thompson, Falk and Young have shown the strongest support. As far as 
I know, Republican Governor Scott McCallum has never taken a position, even 
though there was a medical marijuana bill before the legislature this session.

As for Tom Barrett, his campaign issued a statement saying he supports the 
current federal scheduling of marijuana as a Schedule I drug with no 
medical use, a cruel and outdated position derived from the 1970 Controlled 
Substances Act.

As a congressman he has refused to cosponsor any medical marijuana bills 
such as HR 2592, the bipartisan bill now before the House. And in 1998, he 
actually joined a host of right-wing Republican ideologues like Bob Barr, 
John Mica and Dennis Hastert in voting for H J RES 117, "Expressing the 
Sense of Congress that Marijuana is a Dangerous and Addictive Drug and 
Should not be Legalized for Medicinal Use."

Whether candidates support medical marijuana personally or not, it seems 
they ought to support what the public wants on this issue. There are few 
issues that command this kind of strong support.

Wisconsin needs to elect a governor this year who will respect the people 
of Wisconsin's views on this issue. In that regard, the choices are clear.

Gary Storck; Madison
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MAP posted-by: Tom