Iowa State Senate candidates differ on medical marijuana and banning traffic cameras

Republican takes more liberal position on marijuana

ROCK ISLAND, Ill. - A rare December special election faces voters in Scott County two days after Christmas.

Iowa State Representative Jim Lykam, LeClaire Police Sergeant Michael Gonzales and Severin Gilbert are pursuing the Iowa Senate seat to represent the 45th District that covers Scott County in Des Moines.

Lykam, a Democrat, and Gonzales, a Republican, discussed some of the issues facing the state during an appearance on 4 the Record.

One of the issues covered was medical marijuana.

A fifth of the country now has some form of legalized marijuana, either medical or recreational.

Eight of nine ballot measures passed in the last election.

Medical marijuana is legal in Illinois.

Iowa has struggled with the limits of its cannabis oil law. The current law expires in July.

Gonzales and Lykam explained what changes they would push for in the legislature if elected.

Gonzales says expanding the access to medical marijuana should be explored if it can help people with certain conditions.

Lykam doesn't want to expand medical marijuana beyond the current cannabis oil. He would like to see more conditions included in the eligibility for the drug.

Both men discussed their positions on the decriminalization of non-violent crimes like possessing small amounts of marijuana.

The Cedar Rapids Gazette reported a couple of weeks ago that Republicans with a push from the Libertarian wing of the party could push to get rid of traffic cameras across the state.

State Senator Brad Zaun of Urbandale indicates he will introduce legislation to ban them.

Supporters of the cameras say it's a public safety issue. Opponents say it's a way for local governments to make money by writing more tickets.

Lykam and Gonzales weighed in with their opinions on the ban.

Gonzales says he's open to the idea.

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