Former Minnesota Governor Ventura Testifies on Marijuana Bill
In its 10th Minnesota House committee stop, a bill to legalize marijuana included testimony from Jesse Ventura, Minnesota’s 38th governor and a former Brooklyn Park mayor.
Ventura says if it wasn’t for cannabis, his wife, Terry, wouldn’t have been able to overcome chronic seizures.
“I had to make a decision between Minnesota law or my wife. Well guess what, my wife won,” said Ventura. “I broke Minnesota law. We started receiving cannabis from our friends in Colorado, kept my wife seizure free, until medical was approved here.”
Ventura said the former first lady suffered seizures two to three times a week. He pointed out that no legal medications at the time worked. He says cannabis drops under the tongue did the trick to stop the seizures.
“These were the kind of seizures where you were helpless, lying on the floor, making sure she’s not swallowing her tongue and she keeps breathing and everything you do. We were helpless,” he recalled.
But while legalization may have its benefits, there are also concerns. Those against point to medical research showing brains don’t fully mature until someone reaches their mid-20s.
“Follow the science, not Governor Ventura,” testified Linda Blanton, one of 20 people to testify before the House Health Finance and Policy Committee. “How many children need to be poisoned and how many people need to die in car accidents before we get an acknowledgement that cannabis isn’t a safe drug.”
The current bill, HF 100, would set the legal minimum age at 21. Medical groups would prefer age 25.
Ventura gave a different approach.
“If you’re old enough to die and kill for your country at age 18, you should be allowed to have recreational marijuana,” said Ventura before the committee.
The bill did pass out of the House Health Finance and Policy Committee, which includes Rep. Ned Carroll of Plymouth and Rep. Kristin Bahner of Maple Grove.
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