Texas legislator praises medical marijuana saving girl’s life
A state legislator in Texas has praised the effects medical cannabis has had in helping save a little girl’s quality of life.
Rep. David Simpson of Longview, who is currently running for the Texas Senate, posted a video on his Facebook page of 10-year-old Alexis Bortell’s story of how she began having severe seizures, and ultimately had to leave Texas for Colorado to obtain cannabis oil, which has since allowed her to live an entire year now without having any seizures.
“Cannabis is a plant that can be used responsibly and help those who are suffering from debilitating diseases, including young Texans like Alexis,” he wrote. “Just as gun control does not keep guns out of the hands of criminals, prohibition of cannabis does not keep the plant out of the hands of those who would abuse it. It does, however, keep it out of the hands of law abiding citizens who could use it for good. I hope that soon Alexis and her family will be able to come home to Texas without fear of being prosecuted or torn away from her family because of a plant that’s helping her to live a normal life.”
Simpson introduced a bill during the 2015 legislative session which would have essentially legalized marijuana, with the only penalties for possessing, selling, or growing it pertaining to providing the plant to minors. Many were stunned by such a bill being introduced, and it would go on to pass out of committee 5-1. However, it was never scheduled to be heard by the full Texas House of Representatives. The legislative session ended without any further action taken on the bill.
Although he gained much praise for his bold actions, some of his constituents were not happy with him.
In 2010, he unseated the incumbent, Tommy Merritt, for House District 7 which covers several east Texas counties.
Seeing an opportunity to run for an open senate seat in 2016, Simpson is currently scheduled for a run-off election in the Republican primary on May 24 after a tight second place finish which saw him edge out the third place opponent by 13 votes, with a final tally of 28,395. Fourth place finisher Mike Lee, who received 12,630 votes, has endorsed Simpson.
Simpson will face state Rep. Bryan Hughes, R-Mineola, in the runoff to replace retiring state Sen. Kevin Eltife, R-Tyler, on May 24. Hughes drew more than 63,000 votes in the primary. Hughes has been endorsed Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick.
Simpson was the mayor of Avinger in Cass County from 1993 to 1998 before he relocated in 2000 to Longview.