BRATTLEBORO — I am supporting Becca Balint for Congress because she has integrity, grit, and compassion.
My late husband and I met Balint at a candidate forum when she was first running for Windham County senator. We liked everything she had to say, except about marijuana (cannabis). She was against legalizing it. We didn't vote for her that (and only) time.
After she won, at our request, she came to a meeting of medical marijuana patients and advocates of recreational use. She listened and heard how important increased access to cannabis was for some of us medical patients as medicine; how beneficial recreational use for stress relief, increased creativity, and more was for some folks; how unfair, and even racist, enforcement is and about the pending attempt of corporations to make a money/power grab in the legal market.
Becca heard us and listened. She was the determining vote in the Senate blocking a bad corporate-focused, punitive-enforcement legalization bill. She stood up against very powerful business and political interests because we - some of her constituents - asked her to help us preserve a very important part of our physical and mental self-help care.
Her vote paved the way for the House to pass Vermont's law enabling us to grow our own medicine and for a more equitable market for small farmers and growers in Vermont.
That's just one example of Becca Balint's work for the people of Vermont. They are many others.