GOP U.S. Congressman Admits Medical Marijuana Use
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Speaking to an assembly of cannabis activists, a sitting Republican US Congressman admits medical marijuana use personally to treat arthritis pain.
Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) was one of five members of Congress to address the gathering of activists representing the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).
Rohrabacher was the only Republican of the five to speak on the federal issues concerning marijuana legalization nationwide. He told the activists how he has been a surfer for over three decades and how the sport has taken its physical toll on him.
“I haven’t been able to go surfing for a year-and-a-half and I’ve been in severe pain,” Rohrabacher explained, while trying to demonstrate the paddling motion surfers use to get out into a wave, “because I spent all this time doing that, which I can barely do now.”
Rohrabacher said he didn’t regret the toll surfing had taken on his shoulder, especially if we can do something about it.
“I went to one of these hempfests in San Bernardino,” he continued, explaining a vendor who showed him a cannabis-infused topical preparation to run into his aching shoulder. “And you know what? I tried it about two weeks ago, and it’s the first time… in a year-and-a-half that I’ve had a decent night’s sleep, because the arthritis pain was gone.”
After the applause from the activists subsided, Rohrabacher confirmed that it was a medical marijuana product he tried.
“Now don’t tell anybody I broke the law,” he sarcastically confided, “They’ll bust down my door and, you know, and take whatever’s inside and use it for evidence against me. The bottom line is that… there’s definitely cannabis in there, and it makes sure that I can sleep now.”
Stunned by the admission, NORML Executive Director Allen St. Pierre tells Cannabis Radio News that Rohrabacher’s staff told him this is the first time they’ve heard the congressman make a public admission of his medical marijuana use.
“This is definitely the first legislator in Congress in at least thirty-some-odd years who has acknowledged to using marijuana illegally,” said St. Pierre. “Back in the 19-early-80s, there was a congressman, Stewart McKinney… and he and a guy named Newt Gingrich introduced a bill, and it was all about his [McKinney’s] need to use medical marijuana, even back in the 1980s.”
Other members of Congress addressing the NORML activists were Democrats Sam Farr (CA), Earl Blumenauer (OR), Jared Polis (CO), and Suzan Delbene (WA), all representatives of the states that recognize legal adult use of marijuana.
This post has been updated to include audio from members of Congress and Allen St. Pierre and to correct the misspelling of Rep. Delbene’s first name.