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Two state lawmakers push for medical marijuana, Governor Cuomo opposes it
ALBANY -- Two state lawmakers, one in the senate one in the assembly, recently introduced a bill to make medical marijuana legal in New York State.
There have been pushes for legal medical marijuana in the state over previous years under previous administrations, but all have stalled at some point. However, this years senate bill carries a little bit of weight as it was introduced by Diane Savino, a member of the Independent Democratic Conference, a group that shows power over the senate.
Lobby groups back both lawmakers push.
"There are patients that are suffering, they are in pain, due to a host of illnesses," said David Levin a lobbyist for the Capital Region chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML.
People who will benefit most from the treatment are cancer patients in pain from chemo, AIDS patients and veterans diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder, said Levin.
Governor Cuomo has said many times he is against legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes.
"I understand the benefits, but there are also risks, and I think the risks outweigh the benefits at this point," said Cuomo earlier this year.
A spokesman for the Governor says there has been no change in his position.
Currently 19 other states allow medical marijuana, two have outright legalized pot for all.