On Thursday, a Bipartisan group of lawmakers supported for the passing of a medical marijuana research proposal.
The legislation, sponsored by Representative Matt Gaetz (Republican – Fla.) calls on the attorney general to assess the ways in which federal marijuana policy is prohibiting and slowing medical research on cannabis.
Gaetz’s legislation already has 25 co-supporters, including the powerful chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Bob Goodlatte.
“One of the reasons I’m so enthusiastic is that we really do have a broad base of support from this bill from Republicans and Democrats, from moderates, conservatives, liberals, libertarians,” said Gaetz.
“And I’m hopeful that by finding the area with the common ground, the theory that we ought to create protections for research, that we’ll be able to make some progress on this very important issue.”
The Trump government is open to the medical use of marijuana. The Veterans Health Administration issued an order last year to permit doctors to converse with their patients regarding the use and options of cannabis in those states where it has been legalized.
The Veterans Administration previously faced disapproval for stopping their medical staff from advising their patients about the state-funded research plan, which has the support of many federal agencies and is investigating the connexion between syndromes affecting marijuana and veterans.
Advocates of the bill claim medical marijuana can be useful for elderly people, veterans and those dealing with chronic illnesses.
“We know cannabis is good medicinally for a lot of things: epilepsy, seizures, cancer appetite. And you talk our veterans; they prefer cannabis to opioids,” stated Representative Lou Correa (Democrats – California) to the reporters. Correa further added countries including Canada and Israel have accepted utilizing cannabis for medical uses.
Representative Carlos Curbelo (Republican – Florida) stated he considers it significant that the government is not standing in any way of its study of potential benefits.
“We do need to learn more, we need more research,” said Curbelo. “What we don’t need is a federal government led witch hunt against those who are following state laws, those who want to conduct research and those who want to inform the public.”
Representative Barbara Lee (Democrats – California) stated that she thinks it is a prospect for both sides to come together and assist in advocating the development of medicine.
“We may not agree on every aspect of cannabis legislation, but at the very least we should be able to conduct research and our veterans should be allowed to benefit from these trials that are also a part of this legislation,” said Lee.
In February, Representative Phil Roe of Tennessee, the Republican chairman of the committee declared publicly that he encouraged marijuana research.
“As a physician, I am keenly aware of the need to look for opioid alternatives to treat patients’ chronic pain,” said Roe on Tuesday in a written account. “Since serving as chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, I’ve heard from many veterans, both with physical and invisible wounds, who believe medical cannabis could benefit them.”