Search Results: essmann (5)

It looks like the rough and tumble of politics is too much for Senator Essmann

Thin-Skinned Senator Files Complaint Over Campaign Rhetoric
Just 2 Weeks Ago, Essmann Staged Bogus Lawsuit Threat Against Attorney General
Not satisfied to have decimated patients’ rights, Montana state Senator Jeff Essmann is now attacking his critics with a formal complaint to the Commissioner of Political Practices.
The charge? Essman didn’t like a radio spot that mentioned his name.
“It looks like the rough and tumble of politics is too much for Senator Essmann,” said Bob Brigham, campaign manager for Patients for Reform, Not Repeal. “Maybe he should find a new career. His complaint against a radio spot of ours is untimely, wrong and desperate.”
“The fact is, the Montana Republican Party platform rejects his bill, SB 423, and calls for new medical marijuana legislation that is both workable and realistic,” Brigham added. “The writing is on the wall. SB 423 will either be rejected by the voters or rewritten in the next legislature. Senator Essmann is in denial over the fact that his handiwork is deeply flawed and won’t be law for much longer.”

Patients For Reform Not Repeal

In their official ballot arguments for IR-124 (SB 423), last year’s legislation which all but shut down the medical marijuana law which was approved by Montana’s voters in 2004, Republican Senate Majority Leader Jeff Essmann and Republican House Majority Whip Cary Smith bizarrely cited Democratic Governor Brian Schweitzer.

Prohibition’s End
Democratic Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer called the GOP-controlled Legislature “bat crap crazy” when they voted to overturn the will of the state’s voters on medical marijuana

Schweitzer famously referred to the last Legislature as “bat crap crazy,” and vetoed HB 161, the bill Sen. Essmann and Rep. Smith supported aggressively to completely overturn the will of the voters on medical marijuana.
Later, in addition to issuing an amendatory veto of SB 423, Schweitzer also said of it: “Everybody’s who’s read it says, ‘Oh yeah, it’s unconstitutional.’ “; “I’m kind of disgusted right now”; and “It seems to us unconstitutional on its face.”

Gov. Schweitzer also said SB 423 “violates your constitutional rights to illegal search.” The governor said it requires someone using medical marijuana to “be turned over to law enforcement in every town.”

Graphic: Patients For Reform Not Repeal

​Backers of medical marijuana in Montana say they are still making progress in their efforts to overturn the strict medical marijuana law recently passed by the state’s Republican-controlled Legislature.

The group “Patients for Reform Not Repeal” said it has collected more than 30,000 signatures in their effort to second Senate Bill 423 back to the voters, reports Marnee Banks at KRTV. According to the group, SB 423 effectively shut down safe access to medical marijuana for Montana patients.
The group needs just more than 24,000 valid signatures, or 5 percent of the qualified voters in 34 House districts, to get the law on the ballot. They have until September 30 to gather the signatures.

Photo: Eliza Wiley/Helena Independent Record
Senator Dave Wanzenreid (D-Missoula) spoke Tuesday in the secretary of state’s office to announce the Initiative Referendum 124 petition campaign by Patients For Reform – Not Repeal.

​It only took a week to get 2,000 Montanans to sign petitions to let voters in 2012 decide the fate of the restrictive medical marijuana law passed by their state Legislature this year, backers of the referendum said on Tuesday.
A group called Patients For Reform – Not Repeal has launched a statewide campaign trying to get enough voter signatures to place Senate Bill 423 on the ballot next year, reports Charles S. Johnson at the Billings Gazette.
If the group reaches an additional level of signatures by September 30, the law will be suspended until voters decide in November 2012 whether to keep or reject it.
The referendum is part of a three-pronged attack by medical marijuana supporters and patients. On another front, the Montana Cannabis Industry Association, along with other groups, has mounted a court challenge to the law’s constitutionality.

Graphic: THC Finder

​Montana medical marijuana advocates are getting ready to start a signature-gathering effort to suspend a soon-to-be-enacted law restricting the industry — and they won’t need to collect as many names as they initially believed.

The Secretary of State’s office has determined that advocates need at least 31,238 signatures to block the Legislature’s medical marijuana overhaul bill from becoming law, reports Charles S. Johnson at the Billings Gazette. It could take up to 43,247 signatures, depending on which state House districts they use, but they won’t need to gather 73,010 signatures as some originally believed.