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Question of the day

Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015

* From the Libertarian Party of Illinois

The Pillar of Law Institute has filed a lawsuit against the State of Illinois on behalf of Libertarian Candidates Claire Ball and Scott Schluter which, if successful, would allow them to accept contributions from medical marijuana organizations. As Libertarians, they are supporters of medical marijuana and reforming United States drug law.

As the law stands, Ball and Schluter cannot accept contributions from the medical marijuana industry and medical marijuana companies can be fined up to 150% of the value of any contribution that they make to these candidates or any other along with other fines that can amount to thousands of dollars.

Campaign contributions are a vital way for individuals and companies to coalesce around candidates that share their beliefs and help propel them into office. “A liquor company can donate up to $10,800 to a candidate and so could a tobacco company. Only marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers are censored,” said Lead Counsel for the Pillar Institute Benjamin Barr. The case is assigned to an Obama Appointee, U.S. District Judge John Z. Lee.

* The Question: Should medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers be allowed to make campaign contributions? Take the poll and then explain your answer in comments, please.


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:22 pm:

    Why single out this industry? You shouldn’t be able to pick and choose which industries you want to ban contributions from. Either allow all of them or ban all of them.

  2. - Skeptic - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:25 pm:

    Sure! They’re people too, just like Citizen’s United. Or like Demo said, accept them all or ban them all.

  3. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:26 pm:

    I don’t want candidates getting money from booze, smokes or pot.

  4. - Southside Markie - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:30 pm:

    Agree with Demoralized and Skeptic. They’ll just get around it anyway by supporting a trade association or similar group that supports candidates.

  5. - Ahoy! - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:32 pm:

    Yes, this needs need be fair across the board.

  6. - Outsider - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:35 pm:

    No corporate entities should be allowed to contribute to campaigns.

  7. - Tequila Mockingbird - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:36 pm:

    Sure! Casinos, pharm drug companies, etc. donate plenty. Why should weed growers be treated different?

  8. - Apples in the Square - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:38 pm:

    if the beer distributors can donate, why not marijuana?

  9. - downstate commissioner - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:39 pm:

    voted yes-seems only fair. Pot is no longer completely illegal in IL… Would agree that no corporate entities should be allowed to contribute, but since they are…

  10. - Gruntled University Employee - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:41 pm:

    I voted yes on the ground that they shouldn’t be singled out. If I were King for a day I’d ban all political contributions and switch to public funding. Why do we reward the candidate that can raise and spend the most money and then expect them to be “fiscally responsible”. I’d rather see how “inventive” a candidate could be with a campaign budget. How do we keep every Tom, Dick and Harry from running for office on the State’s dime, I don’t know. But I can’t help but think it would be more economical in the long run than elected officials showing up on day one for the job already bought and paid for.

  11. - Homer J. Quinn - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:42 pm:

    yes. if corn and bean farmers can make political donations so should cannabis farmers.

  12. - Ducky LaMoore - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:42 pm:

    ===I don’t want candidates getting money from booze, smokes or pot.===

    I only want my candidates to get money from booze, smokes or pot. LOL.

  13. - Jeff Trigg - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:44 pm:

    Paranoid. That’s the one word that would best describe Illinois’ medical cannabis legislation, including this part of it.

    There are 178,629 active registered medical cannabis patients in Michigan up from 118,368 in 2013. Illinois has allowed 3,800 medical cannabis since ‘13. 60,000 in Michigan since 2013 versus 3,800 in Illinois since 2013. Why?

    The legislation is overly paranoid, especially concerning the Doctor-patient relationship. If a person has cancer in Illinois and their Doctor won’t or can’t recommend cannabis because of their insurance or ownership (Catholic systems), that cancer patient has to find another Doctor that will recommend cannabis and may have to wait up to a year until Illinois will allow that cancer patient to have access to cannabis. Idiocracy.

    Allowing the medical cannabis groups to participate in politics might help improve the medical cannabis program before it fails. A legislator might actually listen to a story about a cancer patient having to wait a year to get access to cannabis when they are presented with a $5,000 check. Hardly any of them are listening now.

  14. - Liberty - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:45 pm:

    Citizens United

  15. - walker - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:50 pm:

    All in, or pools closed for everyone.

  16. - Bigtwich - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:50 pm:

    Things are vague but I expect taking such donations could still be a federal crime.

  17. - walker - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:53 pm:

    Announcing the “Pillar of Salt Institute” for those who insist on looking back.

  18. - JoanP - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    I see no principled reason why this business should be treated differently from any other.

  19. - @MisterJayEm - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    “Should medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers be allowed to make campaign contributions?”

    Whatever, maaaaan

    Corporate money in politics is already a chronic problem.

    – MrJM

  20. - Honeybear - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    Light those campaigns up.

  21. - ToughGuy - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    If they’re a legally organized and recognized business, I’m not sure there is a good argument against it. Fair is fair.

  22. - Anon. - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 2:58 pm:

    Yes. Everyone should be able to contribute, and every penny contributed by every person should be disclosed.

  23. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:01 pm:

    NO. But I would work to overturn Citizens United. Businesses (and that would probably include unions and associations) should have more limited election rights than individuals. There is an important interest in limiting campaign influence by corporate America — equally including the medical, insurance, financial, liquor, and other regulated businesses. If we are to trust MJ to stay within the regulated field, we should keep transparent any influence and limit it. But my solution may require a Constitutional Amendment to correct the error committed by SCOTUS.

  24. - Huh? - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:09 pm:

    “I don’t want candidates getting money from booze, smokes or pot.”

    But drinking and smoking for personal use is ok?

  25. - Get a Job!! - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:16 pm:

    Voted yes……Medical marijuana should be fall under the same campaign laws as a traditional pharmaceutical

  26. - illini - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:23 pm:

    There are already multi-millions if not billions ready to get involved in this next election cycle. Much as I hate the dark money ( Kochs and there are Illinois based counterparts ). Thank you SCOTUS with your brilliant Citizens United decision.

    I do not see the difference here.

  27. - Flynn's Mom - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:36 pm:

    Why shouldn’t they be able to make contributions? All other businesses can do so.

  28. - Robert the Bruce - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:37 pm:

    Only if their PAC has a punny name.

  29. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:39 pm:

    I voted yes, but cash or check only. No in-kind contributions allowed without a prescription.

  30. - john doe - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:47 pm:

    DUDE! What was the question again?

  31. - JS Mill - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:52 pm:

    Everyone or no one.

  32. - enoughalready - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 3:52 pm:

    How ’bout a compromise? Contributions allowed but only one day per year…April 20.

  33. - Paul Kemp - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:10 pm:

    Federal section law prohibits for-profit corporations from using General teassurg funds for express advocacy of an identified political candidate or party. (2 USC §441b)

    They’ll have to start a PAC and hire some lobbyists like everyone else. Voted “No.”

  34. - Ghost - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:12 pm:

    this seems like a trick quetion, like when did you stop beating your wife….

    of course this should be allowed…..

  35. - WhoKnew - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:19 pm:

    Chronic - you nailed it!

  36. - A guy - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:47 pm:

    There’s absolutely nothing difficult about this one. Of course, Yes.

    The moment Medical Marijuana became legal, it’s industry became as eligible as any regulated industry in the state. You can vote for none of them to be able to contribute, which would be wrong. But a different standard for this vs. others is lunacy.

  37. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:47 pm:

    Yes, this suit sounds like a waste of time and money for the state to defend.

  38. - Amalia - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:49 pm:

    if the pharmaceutical industry can make contributions, so should the med mar industry. it’s MED mar!

  39. - Blue dog dem - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 4:51 pm:

    Once again, our elected officials think they are smarter than those they represent.

  40. - sal-says - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 5:10 pm:

    Why not? Every friggin’ 1%’er gets the oars more than in the water with how they spend.

  41. - qualified somebody nobody sent - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 7:58 pm:

    I totally disagree with 47th Ward. Allow only in kind contributions. Those contributions could ensure a more permissible legislation to follow.

  42. - bảng giá chụp ảnh cưới - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 8:10 pm:

    What’s up mates, its fantastic article about teachingand completely defined, keep it up all the time.

  43. - Duke - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 9:15 pm:

    Money is the whole reason why cannabis is illegal in the first place it influences people to go against the truths of reason.

  44. - SandyC - Tuesday, Nov 24, 15 @ 9:55 pm:

    I believe med cann contributions should be allowed and not discriminated against. It’s a legal substance in this state and if it’s good enough for the tobacco and liquor corporations, why not the medical cannabis industry? I say fair game with full disclosure.

  45. - Lynn S. - Wednesday, Nov 25, 15 @ 2:22 am:

    Are they incorporated? As Mitt Romney said, “corporations are people, my friend.”

    Voted yes, for so many of the reasons already listed.

  46. - Mike G - Wednesday, Nov 25, 15 @ 3:49 pm:

    This was included at the request of a former Republican St Rep based on his fear that the medcann industry awardees would flood political coffers and negatively effect the intended transparency of a 3-yr pilot program (changed to 4 yr later amendment). This was around the time when one single group made an offer to the state to BUY all the state-issued licenses for $187M (monopoly defeated). Many of the reasons mentioned above are EXACTLY why the non contribution provision was included. Our politicians wouldn’t want their integrity coming into question over a few greenbacks would they???(sarcasm ) More importantly, the program has legislative requirements (i.e. Patient background checks, pt fingerprints, marked drivers license) Governor’s support (house & senate passed legislation to extend program to four full years of operation & expand the number of qualifying conditions), and Dr’s providing recommendations to allow qualifying patients safe access to a product that improves their quality of life has any chance of success. Allowing political contributions would only increase the cost of doing business, directly effecting the out the door retail price to patients whom will be driven right back to the black market-which we were all trying to avoid in the first place. What’s more important, patients or politics????

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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