GOP Congressman: You Bet I Use Marijuana — for My Arthritis

House Science, Space and Technology Committee member Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) questions witnesses from NASA, the Department of Defense and the White House during a hearing in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill March 19, 2013 in Washington, DC. The committee asked government and military experts about efforts …
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Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) has revealed that he uses topical medical marijuana wax to ease his arthritis pain.

Two weeks ago, Rohrabacher began using the wax. In an interview with the Orange County Register, the Republican congressman said he had been struggling through pain from his arthritis that, despite using ibuprofen, would still wake him in the night.

The topical cannabis-infused wax does not provide a high, according to the representative from Costa Mesa, California. In the Wednesday interview, he said that putting the wax on his arm has allowed him to sleep through the entire night. Despite not having a physician’s recommendation for the drug, he said he has no intention of stopping his use of the wax. He also expressed his hope that the requirement for a doctor’s directive would soon be eliminated.

Rohrabacher co-authored an amendment to the FY 2016 Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations bill with Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA) that would prohibit “the federal government from using any funds to arrest or prosecute medical marijuana patients or providers that are in a compliance with their state’s laws,” according to a statement from Rohrabacher’s office.

“Too many patients, for too long, have suffered under a regime that encourages doctors to prescribe opiates rather than the cannabinoids they deem much safer and more effective. It’s the federal government and out-of-control Justice Department enforcers who have acted as the real gateway drug,” said Rohrabacher in June 2015. He has also argued that beer is “the real gateway drug.”

Aspiring 2018 gubernatorial candidate Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is among those pushing for a November ballot measure in California that would legalize marijuana, with Rohrabacher’s support. Newsom is also pushing gun control measures for the November ballot.

Medical marijuana is already legal in California. A San Diego State University professor was slated as the first legally operating pot shop owner in the city of San Diego early last year.

Rohrabacher voted against last December’s “trillion dollar fiasco” omnibus spending bill, even though it included his own pot amendment. He explained his vote against the bill: “Huge spending increases, national security loopholes, government attack on internet freedom, funds illegal immigration, quadruples H-2B foreign worker visas, funds IMF bailouts, government control over all waters in the U.S. and a delay of the Obamacare “cadillac tax.””

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