Florida lawmaker sponsoring state medical marijuana bill - FOX 35 News Orlando

Florida lawmaker sponsoring state medical marijuana bill

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A local legislator is sponsoring a bill that will make medical marijuana legal.  It will be named after a Florida resident with Lou Gehrig's disease.

Robert Jordan says his wife Cathy was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease back in 1986.  He says the only thing that makes her better is marijuana.

"When she doesn't have it, she gets sick," says Jordan.  "When she does have it, she gets better."

We talked to Jordan via phone from Parrish, Florida. 

"When she's got it, her mouth dries up, her attitude's better, her appetite's better, her twitching stops.  So they can't tell me it doesn't work. It does work for us."

That's why lawmakers plan to unveil the Cathy Jordan Medical Cannabis Act, making medical marijuana legal for patients with chronic health conditions.  State Rep. Joe Saunders, D-Orlando, and State Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Palm Beach, are sponsoring the legislation in the Florida House and Florida Senate, respectively.

We asked Rep. Linda Stewart, D-Orlando, about her thoughts on the legislation.

"I just think it had been done last year and they wanted to do it again this year, to see if it would be able to be heard so more people, more public could have input."

Stewart is co-sponsoring Charlotte's Web, which would legalize a small amount of extract from cannabis, to help people suffering from seizures.

"It's so low, it doesn't give you a high. It's another tool that the doctors should be able to use if they feel like they've tried every drug possible."

In addition to the two different bills,  residents will also be able to vote on Amendment 2, whether or not to make medical marijuana legal in Florida.

"I think the amendment will take precedent over any law, because the voters would have  voted on it. I do think it's going to pass with no problem.  Eighty-two percent of the people are ok with it in Florida and they only need 60 percent."

While Robert and Cathy Jordan prefer having lawmakers pass the bill, they say, in the long run the state will benefit if approved.

"Once they get a taste of the revenue stream from this, it will be like the lotto."

Rep. Saunders plans to unveil his bill on Monday afternoon in Tallahassee.  The Jordans plan to attend the news conference.

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