Rep. Barney Frank Introduces Medical Marijuana Legislation
On November 10, Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) introduced legislation to allow doctors to prescribe marijuana to patients with specific medical conditions. The bill, very similar to one introduced in 1981 that was co-sponsored by 84 members of the House (including briefly by the current Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich (R-GA)), would reschedule marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II and would create a system for production and distribution of medical marijuana.
H.R. 2618 creates an Office for the Supply of Internationally Controlled Drugs within the Department of Health and Human Services. The Office would set up regulations for the production and distribution of marijuana for medical purposes and the allocation of marijuana for use in research in the U.S. Registered doctors would be allowed to prescribe marijuana for treatment of conditions and effects of cancer chemotherapy, glaucoma, AIDS wasting syndrome, or muscle spasms from multiple sclerosis, paraplegia, or quadriplegia.
The bill is co-sponsored by Reps. Harry Johnston (D-FL), Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), and Gerry Studds (D-MA). Reps. Johnston and Studds have announced their retirement at the end of this Congress.
[For more information, contact NORML at 1001 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 1010, Washington, DC 20036, 202-483-5500 or Rob Kampia at the Marijuana Policy Project at P.O. Box 77492, Washington, DC 20013, 202-462-5747. To reach Rep. Barney Frank's office, contact 2404 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC 20515, 202-225-5931.]