Senator who had cancer, smoked pot, backs medical marijuana

By ADAM BEAM – January 9, 2019 – AP News

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Diagnosed with cancer seven years ago, Kentucky Republican state Sen. Dan Seum said doctors gave him a “nice bottle of Oxycontin,” a legal opioid-based prescription painkiller that has led to a spike in overdose deaths throughout the state.

“I threw it in the garbage can and went home and smoked a joint,” the 77-year-old lawmaker said. “And guess what? No nausea. I was able to function. I was going through the (chemo) treatment. It was during the legislative session, I did not miss a day due to nausea from the cancer.”

Seum was one of a bipartisan group of Kentucky lawmakers on Wednesday who introduced a bill that would make marijuana legal in Kentucky for medical purposes only. The proposal comes weeks after the U.S. Congress, led by U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, passed a farm bill that effectively legalized hemp, a crop that comes from the same plant that produces marijuana.

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