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Missouri House passes drug monitoring bill

By Marshall Griffin, KWMU

Jefferson City, MO – A bill that would create a database for purchases of pseudo-ephedrine and similar drugs passed the Missouri House today by an 84 to 69 vote, one of the closest of the 2008 session.

Pseudo-ephedrine is one of the key ingredients in the manufacture of Methamphetamine.

Republicans and Democrats were each split within their own ranks.

Opponents claimed the law would give government too much power to monitor what citizens are buying. State Representative and physician Robert Schaaf (R, St. Joseph) voted "no."

"Every controlled substance that you take, or that your family member takes, (would be) sent electronically to a massive database in Jefferson City...Big Brother is going to know every controlled substance that you take," Schaaf said.

State Representative Jeff Roorda (D, Barnhart) is a former police officer. He voted "yes."

"Mr. Speaker, last time I checked, Big Brother was a fictional character...to invoke George Orwell's wild notions...is nonsense...what does exist is our clear responsibility to address issues that we've shrugged our responsibility on," Roorda said.

The bill now goes to the Missouri Senate, which is scheduled to vote on its own drug monitoring bill next week.

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