CallieMimosa at aol.com
CallieMimosa at aol.com
Wed Jun 28 22:17:42 EDT 2006
Today, June 28, the U.S. House of Representatives defeated by a vote of
163-259 an amendment that would have prevented the DEA and the U.S. Justice
Department from spending any more taxpayer money to raid and prosecute medical
marijuana patients and providers in the 11 states where medical marijuana is
Although we lost, today's vote was a stronger showing than political
observers had predicted, in large part because of the more than 5,000 letters that
MPP members and allies sent to their U.S. representatives in the last week.
Fully 72% of House Democrats voted for our amendment, and 18 House Republicans
bucked the White House to vote "yes."
This is only the fourth time in history that the full House has voted on
binding legislation to end the federal government's war on medical marijuana.
(The U.S. Senate never has.) Today's vote was a record vote for medical
marijuana — the legislation received two more votes than it did on June 15, 2005,
and this is an election year.
Leading up to the vote, the MPP staff and our lobbyists had more than 250
meetings with House members, including visiting every single Republican House
office, which had never happened before. In the days leading up to the vote,
we also delivered plastic handcuffs to more than 100 House offices with
"evidence tags" asking them to vote for the amendment, and we generated several
thousand constituent phone calls and thousands of letters to members of
Additionally, MPP nurtured connections within the conservative movement for
months leading up to the vote, which helped lay the groundwork for the letter
that was sent to Congress this week by a host of prominent conservative
organizations, blasting the federal government for wasting tax dollars on raiding
medical marijuana patients.
MPP also coordinated an unprecedented grassroots campaign in California to
pressure the state's Republican congressional delegation to support the
amendment and funded, through MPP's grants program, the former executive director
of the San Diego Republican Party to lobby for the amendment. We also placed
organizers in key congressional districts throughout the country to run
high-pressure grassroots campaigns directed at targeted swing votes.
Now that the amendment has 163 votes, in the next year we'll be targeting a
smaller number of districts to pick up the remaining 55 votes we need to
reach a 218-vote majority.
The momentum is on our side, and we'll keep fighting until Congress listens
to the American people and ends the government's cruel and needless war on
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