steve dickerson

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Tennessee: Medical Marijuana Supporters Hope To Embolden Legislature


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Half a dozen medical marijuana supporters last week gathered on Legislative Plaza in Nashville holding signs saying "Green Cross Tennessee." The group advocates medicinal cannabis awareness in the state, and hope to embolden Tennessee lawmakers to provide safe access for patients who need the herb.

On Tuesday a legislative hearing in the Tennessee Senate Health and Welfare Committee focused on what will become a new version of Senate Bill 1248, sponsored by Nashville physician and state Senator Steve Dickerson, reports Chris Bundgaard at WKRN.

"I am not the stereotype that has been created," said retired Nashville financial advisor Paul Kuhn just before the hearing. "There are millions of us out there. I am a long time supporter of marijuana law reform. I have seen it help patients like my late wife when legal medications failed completely."

Kuhn's name has been attached to a failed medical marijuana bill in past years. On Tuesday he was back with many other medicinal cannabis advocates on Tennessee's Capitol Hill for a hearing on a bill which will be introduced next legislative session.

The measure is expected to allow limited, non-smoking use of cannabis oil and capsules for conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy.

Tennessee: GOP Medical Marijuana Bill: Eat It Or Rub It On, But Don't Smoke It


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Tennessee's weirdly Puritan attitude towards cannabis is being highlighted this week by a medical marijuana bill being drawn up by Republican state lawmakers.

Those drafting the legislation said the measure would allow the cannabis to be eaten or applied externally through topical oil, but not smoked, reports Chris Bundgaard at WKRN.

"It would likely be the most conservative medical marijuana bill in the country, and if passed, the nation's most carefully controlled law," bragged Capitol Hill lobbyist David McMahan, who failed to explain what's so damned attractive about "the most conservative medical marijuana bill" rather than "the medical marijuana bill most helpful to patients." McMahan's lobbying firm has been hired to help guide the bill through the GOP-dominated Tennessee Legislature.

McMahan told News 2 he has been hired by a group called Tenncangrow, which is listed as a Murfreesboro LLC and headed by estate planning lawyer David B. Laroche.

The two GOP bill sponsors, Rep. Ryan Williams of Putnam County and Sen. Steve Dickerson, MD of Nashville, said the bill would be "limited" in scope.

McMahan called it a "carefully controlled measure with a limited delivery method." It really is starting to sound as if these folks believe that the fewer patients helped, the better a medical marijuana bill is.

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