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GOP Group Calls for End to Marijuana Prohibition

by: Natalie San Luis

Fri Feb 28, 2014 at 05:00 PM CST

A new Republican pro-legalization group is holding its inaugural meeting in Houston on March 15.

The group, Republicans Against Marijuana Prohibition (RAMP), was formed by Ann Lee, a lifelong Republican who became a marijuana legalization activist after a workplace accident left her son disabled.

The inaugural meeting was announced the day before The Texas Tribune released a poll indicating that only 23 percent of Texans believe marijuana should be illegal in all circumstances.

The conversation surrounding marijuana prohibition seems to be picking up steam among Republicans and Democrats alike, especially after both Rick Perry and Wendy Davis said they could support decriminalization legislation. But even as pressure for reform grows, Abbott continues to support harsh drug policies.

Read more about RAMP after the jump.

HOUSTON, Feb. 25, 2014 -- Republicans Against Marijuana Prohibition (RAMP) will host their inaugural meeting in Houston on March 15, 2014 at King Street Patriots. This forum will highlight the fundamentals of marijuana policy. RAMP will explore the four major initiatives gaining traction nationwide: medical marijuana, decriminalization, industrial hemp, and the legalization model to tax & regulate marijuana like alcohol. Meant to be an open discourse, RAMP encourages attendance by those on all sides of the debate.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/p...

A national political caucus founded in 2012, RAMP serves as a voice for all Republicans who oppose the failed policy of prohibition. RAMP's mission is to work within the GOP to educate and connect with lawmakers, party leadership, and grassroots activists. The conservative principals of limited government, fiscal responsibility, and individual liberty are the focal point of RAMP's message. RAMP believes these core Republican ideals have been greatly eroded by government policies that criminalize responsible adults for using cannabis.

RAMP's first public event will feature the group's founder and Executive Director Ann Lee. A lifelong Republican, octogenarian, and mother to five sons, Lee changed her viewpoint on marijuana after a workplace accident left her son Richard Lee as a paraplegic. Richard Lee uses marijuana to relieve his chronic nerve pain since discovering the medicine's benefits in the 1990's. Richard is a highly respected entrepreneur and founder of Oaksterdam University in Oakland, California.

In addition to Ann Lee, featured speakers will include:

Terry Nelson of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) will be discussing The Strategy of Federal Drug Enforcers: Cost, No Benefit. Nelson has served as a US Border Patrol Agent, US Customs Agent, and Department of Homeland Security Agent during a career lasting over three decades. His assignments have put him in Mexico, Central America, and South America.

Judge John Delaney served in the 272nd District Court in Brazos County, Texas, for sixteen years and from 2001 to present as a Senior District Judge on child abuse and neglect cases. Delaney has managed a solo mediation and arbitration practice since 2001. He will present Protecting Children? Why Marijuana Prohibition is Not a Pro-Family Policy.

Richard A. Evans, M.D., is a board certified surgical oncologist and founder of the Texas Cancer Center. He will be speaking about Medical Marijuana: Patients' Experiences in Texas. He is the author of Making the Right Choice: Treatment Options in Cancer Surgery and has been treating cancer patients since 1978.

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