State Rep. Ball: Marshall opposition to medical marijuana ‘disappointing’; Predicts AG opinion ‘won’t change that many minds’ in legislature
Last week, Attorney General Steve Marshall sent a letter to lawmakers voicing his opposition to the legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Among a number of reasons, Marshall warned legalization by the state of Alabama would contradict federal law.
During an appearance on Huntsville radio’s WVNN, State Rep. Mike Ball (R-Madison), an outspoken proponent of medical marijuana legalization, voiced his disappointment in Marshall’s letter.
Ball argued certain laws can be considered “unjust” regarding this issue.
“The thing that was so disappointing to me about Attorney General Marshall, and I don’t think — and I’ve always thought of him as a compassionate man — I think he has turned a deaf ear to the number of people that can be helped by it,” Ball told “The Jeff Poor Show.” “He has spent a lot of time looking at the negative effects. But I don’t think he has spent very much time talking to the doctors who treat with it, listening to the people.”
“There are certain laws — if they inflict suffering, they are unjust laws,” he added. “Now, I will tell you — in the executive branch as the attorney general, I recognize the rule of law. I believe in the rule of law. But I also believe that the legislative branch of government is about debating and discussing and having this process where competing forces come into play and they modify the social contract. Our purpose is to find what does the best good for the most people.”
The Madison County Republican lawmaker said he did not think Marshall’s letter would sway opinion among his colleagues.
“I don’t think this is going to change that many minds because there is a lot of compelling evidence,” he said. “There are a hugely growing number of medical people that need to have this option and want to have this option. I don’t think there’s that many borderline people, votes that that’s going to change, and we had a lot of votes. I do think the people that were opposed to it will remain opposed to it. And this will give them a little extra political cover. I think as we go through this, we’re not going to lay down and die because, ‘Oh, the attorney general said that.'”