It was an emotional day in the Capitol Rotunda. Sobbing can be heard and tears were flowing from the faces of onlookers and medical marijuana advocates as parents of children with Dravet’s Syndrome and cancer patients were sharing their medical needs and experiences with the drug.
Last week, it was reported that House Speaker Mike Turzai was brought to tears in a closed door caucus meeting where Majority Leader David Reed forced the issue upon the Speaker. Turzai, and his hysteria over reefer madness, fled meeting to the dismay of his party. Shortly after the caucus meeting, the House Rules Committee sent Senate Bill 3 to the House Floor by a 25 – 8 vote and it was placed on the table for a vote.
One amendment in particular comes from House Representative Todd Stephens – who is currently running for Attorney General. His amendment would change the terms of who can seek treatment for PTSD. Under the current bill, anyone suffering from PTSD – whether it’s women who were in an abusive relationship or who were raped or assaulted or anyone who had a life altering event – would be able to use medical marijuana to combat those symptoms, but Stephens’ amendment would only allow soldiers suffering from PTSD to get treatment for that disease.
At today’s Campaign for Compassion press conference, Becky Witters brought the gallery to tears as she explained the tragic death of her 20 month old daughter Grace Witters. At four months old, Grace was diagnosed with Dravets Syndrome, a disease that causes severe seizures. Becky Witters told the crowd that her family was waiting for the Pennsylvania General Assembly to pass a medical marijuana bill, but she told the crowd that her daughter “died waiting for the act to be passed” on November 11, 2015.