Oberweis Defends His Vote for Medical Marijuana

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) -- Illinois state Sen. Jim Oberweis says he broke ranks with most fellow Republicans and voted to legalize medical marijuana because it might help people in pain.

Oberweis was a vocal critic of former GOP Chairman Pat Brady for supporting same-sex marriage, which the party platform opposes. It also opposes illegal drug use. However, the well-known conservative says it's different for a legislator to go against the party platform.

Oberweis tells the Daily Herald it was Brady's job to represent the party's ideals. He adds a legislator has a right "to vote as he or she sees fit."

Brady stepped down as GOP chairman earlier this month.

The medical marijuana law allows a patient with a relationship with a doctor to be prescribed a limited amount from a state-run dispensary.

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