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Oklahoma Rep. holds up marijuana bill because church would not approve

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In Oklahoma a Republican state senator is refusing to allow a new bill proposing the legalization of marijuana to be heard in his senate subcommittee because his church would not be in favor of it.

According to a Red Dirt Report issued Feb. 5, Oklahoma state Senator Don Barrington (R-Lawton) will not allow a hearing for a new bill proposing the legalization of marijuana in his senate subcommittee. Barrington is described as “a rigid, religious, law-and-order type who won’t brook any opportunity for the pro-marijuana crowd to get their voice heard in his Public Safety Committee.”

Senate Bill 2116 would tax and regulate marijuana in Oklahoma and let people have small amounts, up to an ounce, for personal use. The bill is being sponsored and promoted by State Sen. Constance Johnson (D-Forest Park).

Johnson said she is discouraged that Barrington “will not hear SB 2116” because of “non-specific reasons including DA’s, ‘soft-on-crime,’ (and) his church members would not be in favor of it …”

Barrington says his phone has been ringing off the hook from constituents upset with his decision, but he says rude messages and calls won't change his mind.

A hearing on the science of marijuana will be held next Wednesday by the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Select Agencies. Marijuana advocates will spend the day talking with their elected officials about the proposal.

If you would like to send Sen. Barrington a message you can find his contact information here.

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