House panel votes to allow medical marijuana use

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A bill to legalize possession of small amounts of marijuana for medical purposes has been approved by an Alabama House committee.

The sponsor, Democratic Rep. Patricia Todd of Birmingham, acknowledges that with only five days remaining the bill has little chance of winning final passage this session.

The bill would allow a patient suffering serious pain because of cancer or their ailments to possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana.

The patient would need permission from a doctor and could grow his or her own marijuana.

One committee member, Democratic Rep. Yusuf Salaam of Selma, expressed concern that allowing marijuana use for medical purposes might open the door to full scale legalization of the drug.

The bill now goes to the full House.

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