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Montana Repeals Medical Marijuana Law

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By Jason Beahm on February 16, 2011 8:49 AM

It appears that not everyone is utterly enamored with the idea of medical marijuana. Take for example, the state of Montana, where the House of Representatives voted to repeal the state's medical marijuana law.

The law, which was six years old, was voted against 63-37. Under the law, overwhelmingly passed by voters in 2004, those with a debilitating or terminal illnesses can use medical marijuana to treat pain and other chronic symptoms.

The reason for the attempted repeal of the Montana medical marijuana law is a belief held by many that medical marijuana was not being used for the reason the law was passed. In fact, house speaker Mike Milburn said the state was originally "duped" into passing the act, CNN reports. Milburn said that many of the people who receive medical marijuana are not terminally ill.

State Democrats have said that the legislature is not the appropriate place to repeal the Montana medical marijuana law passed by a voter initiative, KTVH reports.

"A great majority of these people are honest people and they are using it because they're in a great deal of pain, they need medical cannabis," said Democratic Rep. Tim Furey, CNN reports.

If the measure passes the house, it will be sent to the Senate. The state is also considering two alternative measures, one that would tighten the law, and another that would establish a licensing and regulator system for medical marijuana in Montana. A number of states, including California, have legalized medical marijuana for sick patients. The laws remain controversial and part of a legal gray area, as marijuana remains illegal under federal law.

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