Pubdate: Fri, 04 Mar 2011 Source: Billings Gazette, The (MT) Copyright: 2011 The Billings Gazette Contact: http://billingsgazette.com/app/contact/?contact=letter Website: http://www.billingsgazette.com/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/515 Author: Dan Fuchs DON'T REPEAL MARIJUANA LAW, FIX IT As a potential Senate District 24 candidate in 2012, I have serious concerns about the handling of the medical marijuana issue by my GOP colleagues. Because of term limits and the inexperience that comes with it, I believe Speaker Mike Milburn has made a huge miscalculation. First, medical marijuana became law by citizen initiative with over 100,000 more Montanans voting for than against. If the Senate endorses the repeal bill, which I have discouraged, the bill will be vetoed by Gov. Brian Schweitzer. The governor will undoubtedly wait as long as allowed by law to veto, knowing, as the GOP Senate leadership must, that there are not the votes to override. He will tell the legislators they had 2005, 2007 and 2009 to provide side boards and create a regulatory framework for the industry but they did nothing. Now because of Attorney General Eric Holder's October 2009 memo, they want to blame the voter and tell them they did not vote for this? It appears by the House vote, the Senate will not be able to reach a compromise with the faithful freshmen followers of Milburn, and they will adjourn with nothing. This, however, would not be good for our communities. The industry needs to be regulated, and I encourage you to call your senator and tell them to kill the repeal. There are bills in the process to regulate, and we cannot risk the scenario described above. Dan Fuchs Billings - --- MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.