Advocates for medical marijuana in Tennessee suffered another blow Tuesday. The bill was scheduled to get a full hearing and possibly new life, but those hopes faded quickly when lawmakers refused to even hear testimony on the bill.
Supporters had expected to give full testimony in front of a Senate committee, but they soon left disappointed.
"Basically, I had two to three hours a day that I was awake, and during those hours I would experience real nausea and pain and just a miserable time. And after I found cannabis, it basically turned my life around," John Donovan said.
Donovan said he had expected to tell lawmakers about how medical marijuana helped him deal with the debilitating pain and nausea caused by his severe case of rheumatoid arthritis.
However, Republican lawmakers on the Senate committee refused to make a motion to hear the bill and all the Democratic members were conspicuously absent.
After no motion and no hearing, the sponsor of the bill is disappointed her own colleagues didn't show up to help her have a hearing.
"Unfortunately, that seems to happen around here when there's an unpopular thing and people really don't want to take a stand on it. They either take a walk and don't vote or they don't show up so they don't have to make a difficult choice," said State Sen. Beverly Marrero, D-Memphis.
The House sponsor had already taken the plan off the table earlier this month, so it's officially dead now in both chambers.
Marrero says she is not going to give up, though. If she is reelected next year, she says she plans to make this bill the first one she files.
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