The girl suffered a seizure, one of about 30 she suffers a day, while her mother told the Minnesota House Health and Human Services Policy Committee on Tuesday night that marijuana could help her daughter.
“It would be the best day of my life if I could hear my daughter say ‘momma’ again,” Angie Weaver of Hibbing said, adding that there is evidence that marijuana can help some patients regain speech and reduce seizures.
The Weavers were among those who told committee members during the 3½-hour meeting that marijuana can fight intense pain and improve other medical issues. The committee passed the measure on a split voice vote, sending it to another of several committees that must consider the bill before it reaches a full House vote.
A similar bill awaits Senate committee action.
An amendment to ban smoking marijuana and patients growing their own marijuana failed 10-8. The amendment would have authorized use of pills, liquid, vaporizing and other methods of delivering the chemical in marijuana.
Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen, R-Glencoe, said that eliminating smoking and cultivating could attract support from law enforcement officers and Gov. Mark Dayton.
Chairwoman Tina Liebling, D-Rochester, accepted only health-related testimony Tuesday, reserving comments about public safety or law enforcement issues for other committees. Most law enforcement groups oppose the measure.
Rep. Carly Melin, D-Hibbing, said her bill would allow “legal, safe and regulated treatment for patients who need it.”
Weaver and her husband, Josh, sat with their daughter in the committee room while she had a brief seizure in front of the panel.
Amelia Weaver was born normal, her mother said, but after 2½ years she “lost the ability to talk and communicate.”
Angie Weaver said children in similar situations have regained some use of their voices after using marijuana. The substance also can