GOP consultant and anti-pot advocate sues former opponent for disclosing his medical marijuana card
A Republican consultant whose firm represents a number of anti-marijuana clients filed suit against his former political opponents for allegedly disclosing his medical marijuana card, bakersfield.com reports.
Matthew Martin is the treasurer of the Kern County Young Republicans and an employee of the GOP consulting firm Western Pacific Research, which represents Jacquie Sullivan—the Bakersfield, CA councilwoman who’s the face of a “Kern County-Get Off the Pot” effort.
“We’re suffering a deficit right now of motivation and morality,” Martin said in an interview last month. “This is another means to keep people high, sitting on their couch and they’re not out there fighting for what they believe in or working for their families.”
Martin did concede there are legitimate uses for pot, bakersfield.com reports.
For all of his public advocacy against marijuana, Martin himself uses the Schedule I drug per his doctor’s orders, according to an email obtained by The Californian. Now, Martin alleges former Bakersfield mayoral candidate T.J. Esposito and former Bakersfield City Councilman Mark Salvaggio released his “protected health information” to influence the public policy on the use of marijuana.
Martin says Esposito emailed him on Oct. 22 and threatened him with the release of information about his personal marijuana use.
“[Esposito] made threats and demands on Martin and insinuated that Martin should attempt to influence the clients of his employer and attempt to influence public votes and public policy in favor of Esposito and the proliferation and commercialization of marijuana or the protected health information,” the suited alleges.
An attorney for Esposito refutes that claim.
“That position is a complete fabrication,” Gabe Godinez said. “We’re going to fight that vigorously.”