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Local republicans divided on medical marijuana | News

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Local republicans divided on medical marijuana

It's even divided some staunch Republicans in Central Georgia.

State Representative Allen Peake wants to allow medical marijuana for cancer and glaucoma patients and children who suffer seizures.

Peake, a Macon Republican, began his push after seeing our report two weeks ago about four-year-old Haleigh Cox of Forsyth, who suffers up to 100 seizures a day.

Bibb County Republican activist, Bill Knowles, says Haleigh's story changed his heart as well.

"I mean, I have a small child. I've got a six year old, seven year old. And I can't imagine what the Cox family goes on a daily basis watching their child suffer like that. Then, when the second report came that Allen Peake had seen that and had changed his mind about how he was thinking about it, 'Well, you know what? I should look into this more and not be so closed-minded,'" he said.

But Bibb executive committee member, Calvin Palmer, sees the movement as an effort to legalize recreational marijuana in Georgia.

"Be a man and say, 'I want marijuana approved,' and put your name on that bill and be a politician, and you get up there and approve that bill. Don't take photo ops with children. Don't use children to get a bill passed that you want passed," Palmer said.

Bruce Burns, an oncologist at Central Georgia Cancer Care, says in Georgia, there are liquid marijuana pills geared toward cancer patients but are rarely used. He suggests they could also be used to help people suffering seizures.

"Small studies and some anecdotal evidence suggesting it would benefit, so I think they're trying to open up a research initiative. You know, any time in medicine you can get patients involved in research, that is a good thing," said Burns.

Allen Peake says that lawmakers are preparing a bill that they plan to introduce in a few days.

Meanwhile Jerry Luquire, President of the Georgia Christian Coalition issued a news release reiterating his organization's opposition to legalize marijuana.


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