NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- March 23, 2006 

  NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- March 23, 2006 

Posted by CN Staff on March 23, 2006 at 14:39:12 PT
Weekly Press Release  
Source: NORML  

 California: State Officials Ask Court To Reject Prop. 215 ChallengeMarch 23, 2006 - Sacramento, CA, USASacramento, CA: California Attorney General Bill Lockyer is requesting the state Superior Court to throw out a lawsuit filed earlier this year by San Diego County supervisors alleging that California's ten-year-old medical cannabis law should be pre-empted by the federal Controlled Substances Act. San Diego supervisors filed suit rather than comply with a 2004 state law mandating the county to issue identification cards to authorized medical marijuana patients.
In motions filed this week in Superior Court, state officials argue that San Diego County supervisors "dislike" California's medical cannabis law, but have no legal standing to challenge it. "Because the courts can only hear cases that involve factual disputes between opposing parties, and because there is no actual dispute here, such a request for an advisory opinion requires dismissal of the charges," he said.The court is expected to rule on the state's motion in May.According to a recent telephone poll of San Diego County voters, 78 percent of respondents said that they opposed the supervisors' lawsuit. Sixty-seven percent said that they support the state's medical cannabis law.For more information, please contact Keith Stroup, NORML Legal Counsel, at (202) 483-5500.DL: Spray Reduces Spasticity In MS Patients Unresponsive To Other Treatments March 23, 2006 - London, UKLondon, United Kingdom: The administration of Sativex, an oral spray consisting of natural cannabis extracts, significantly improves spasticity in Multiple Sclerosis (MS) patients who have failed to respond to currently available anti-spasticity treatments, according to the preliminary results of clinical trial data announced last week by the British technology firm GW Pharmaceuticals.Three hundred and thirty five patients with MS-associated spasticity participated in the 14-week randomized, placebo-controlled trial. "Analysis of the per protocol population (those patients that complied with the study protocol) showed positive and statistically significant improvement ... in spasticity as measured on a 1-10 numeric rating scale," the company stated in a press release. "All patients entering the study were taking the best available anti-spasticity medication and remained on such medication through the trial. ... [I]mprovements seen in the trial were obtained over and above currently available treatment."Patients in the trial who did not comply with the study's protocol also gained relief from Sativex, though not to a degree that reached statistical significance. Investigators attributed this result to a larger than expected placebo-response, thus reducing the size of the difference between the experimental and control groups.The company also announced that a separate analysis of the three clinical trials now completed on Sativex and MS-associated spasticity, incorporating a total of 652 patients, shows the spray to be significantly superior to placebo.Earlier this year, United States regulatory officials authorized the first-ever clinical trial in the US investigating the efficacy of Sativex for the treatment of cancer pain. Sativex is currently available by prescription in Canada and on a limited basis in Spain and Great Britain for patients suffering from neuropathic pain, Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and other conditions. Two additional Phase III clinical trials investigating the use of Sativex on peripheral neuropathic pain are scheduled to be completed later this year.For information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Senior Policy Analyst, at (202) 483-5500 or visit: Lawsuit Challenges Financial Aid Ban For Student Drug OffendersMarch 23, 2006 - Washington, DC, USAWashington, DC: The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Drug Law Reform Project, along with Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP), has filed a federal class action suit against the US Department of Education challenging the constitutionality of a Congressional ban on financial aid for students convicted of a minor drug crime while attending college.The Congressional ban, known as the "Aid Elimination Provision" of the Higher Education Act, has denied federal financial aid to an estimated 200,000 students since its enactment in 1998. Though Congress amended the law earlier this year so that students with past drug convictions may now apply for federal financial aid, students who are convicted of a nonviolent drug offense ­ including minor marijuana possession ­ while in college continue to lose their federal aid eligibility under the law.The lawsuit contends that the federal ban is unconstitutional because it amounts to double jeopardy, further penalizing students who have already been criminally sanctioned by the courts. The suit also argues that the law violates students' right to due process, and disproportionately impacts minorities."This lawsuit seeks to ensure that no student will ever again have to worry about losing their financial aid, and with it, their access to higher education, because of a minor drug conviction," SSDP Executive Director Kris Krane said. He added that SSDP and the ACLU are actively seeking additional plaintiffs to join in the class-action lawsuit.For more information, please visit: NORML Foundation (DC)Published: March 23, 2006Copyright: 2006 NORML Contact: norml Website: NORML Archives 

Home    Comment    Email    Register    Recent Comments    Help

Comment #5 posted by OverwhelmSam on March 24, 2006 at 16:10:31 PT
Time For A Snickers Bar
From the Attorney General of California. Thank you Sir.Now, de-elect these ignorant San Diego politicians.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #4 posted by Toker00 on March 24, 2006 at 03:40:18 PT
That was good. Thanks for taking up for the highly "skilled". I, for one, appreciate it! :)Toke.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #3 posted by afterburner on March 23, 2006 at 21:38:12 PT

'cobbled-together, poorly thought-out bill'
It's an insult to cobblers unless they're making really ugly and uncomfortable shoes.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #2 posted by mayan on March 23, 2006 at 18:27:34 PT

Critical Mass All Around
From the first article on the bulletin...According to a recent telephone poll of San Diego County voters, 78 percent of respondents said that they opposed the supervisors' lawsuit. Sixty-seven percent said that they support the state's medical cannabis law.In other words, the San Diego supervisors will definitely be unemployed come the next election. Buh-bye.THE REVOLUTION MIGHT BE TELEVISED...Is It Safe Yet? Hits Prime Time on CNN: Skeptics Receive Fair Shake on Showbiz Tonight - Video Download(scroll down): On the Spot: 9/11 Cover-up Poll (Vote!!!)
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #1 posted by FoM on March 23, 2006 at 16:04:44 PT

Press Release from MPP
Poll: Alaskans Oppose Marijuana Re-Criminalization 56%-43%****March 23, 2006 JUNEAU, ALASKA -- A new poll of Alaska voters reveals strong opposition to Gov. Frank Murkowski's bill to re-criminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana in the home. In the survey, conducted March 6-11 by Goodwin Simon Strategic Research, only 43 percent supported the measure, which the Senate recently tacked onto an anti-methamphetamine bill now being considered by a Senate-House conference committee. 56 percent opposed the bill, with just one percent undecided.Fifty percent of voters said they supported the Alaska Supreme Court ruling that the privacy provision of the state constitution allows adults to possess up to four ounces of marijuana for personal use in their homes, with 47 percent opposed. When those opposed were asked how they would feel if possession of a smaller amount of marijuana were permitted, support for the decision rose to 56 percent."Alaskans strongly disapprove of the governor's marijuana legislation, and don't want our legislators rushing ahead with this cobbled-together, poorly thought-out bill," said Bill Parker, former Alaska state legislator and retired deputy commissioner of corrections. "The conference committee now has one more reason to put the brakes on this ill-conceived idea.""Alaskans value the right of privacy in our own homes as guaranteed in our constitution," said Michael McLeod-Ball of the ACLU of Alaska. "Alaskans think it's wrong for the governor and legislature to do an end-run around our constitutional privacy protections. The mainstream believes there's a middle ground that the politicians are ignoring in the name of partisan politics."Goodwin-Simon surveyed 500 voters in a scientific, randomly- selected sample by telephone March 6-11, 2006. The poll, which was commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project, has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.3%. Detailed results are available at: 20,000 members and 100,000 e-mail subscribers nationwide, the Marijuana Policy Project is the largest marijuana policy reform organization in the United States. MPP believes that the best way to minimize the harm associated with marijuana is to regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol. For more information, please visit:
[ Post Comment ]

  Post Comment