Medical Marijuana Advocates Elevate Battle With Dayton

The advocacy group that’s leading the charge for medical marijuana legislation in Minnesota is taking to the airwaves in its ongoing battle with Gov. Mark Dayton.

Minnesotans for Compassionate Care announced this morning that a 30-second TV commercial “slamming Gov. Mark Dayton for blocking effective medical marijuana legislation” will premiere during the “Tonight Show” on Minnesota stations tonight.

The commercial features Angela Garin of St. Paul and her 5-year-old son, Paxton. Garin says her son’s seizures were reduced by 88 percent when he was given medical marijuana during a trip to Oregon, where it is legal.

The Duluth News Tribune in January portrayed a Hibbing couple, Josh and Angie Weaver, who also are involved in seeking passage of the legislation. Their daughter, Amelia, has a form of epilepsy known as Dravet syndrome and suffers frequent seizures.

The bill was authored by Rep. Carly Melin, DFL-Hibbing. Proponents say they’ve compromised to the point that it would be the most restrictive medical marijuana act in existence.

For his part, Dayton has proposed legislation under which medical marijuana would be studied at the Mayo Clinic. He has said he would not support a measure that didn’t have the backing of law enforcement. But medical groups such as the Minnesota Medical Association and the Minnesota Psychiatric Association also have concerns about medical marijuana, he said in a statement. And the Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota supports his bill, he said.

The medical marijuana advocates say they plan to deliver a petition to Dayton’s office on Thursday calling on him to “stop blocking” Melin’s bill.

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