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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – A group that advocates relaxing marijuana laws is considering broadening its campaign to Kansas City and Springfield.

The group, Show-Me Cannabis Regulation, was behind a 2004 measure that greatly relaxed penalties for marijuana smoking and possession in Columbia.

The leader of that effort, Amber Langston, says the city-based measures are considered small steps toward getting a statewide measure passed.

A petition drive earlier this year did not gather enough signatures to get a statewide initiative on the November ballot. But Langston told The Kansas City Star (http://bit.ly/MTvAdL ) that was due more to lack of resources than lack of support.

Opponents are already gearing up to fight the effort. John Hagan III, a Kansas City ophthalmologist, says studies show the drug has several detrimental effects, and it’s illegal for a good reason.

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