"Obama Expected To Support Medical Pot Reform On National Television" – ThinkProgress

by Sam P.K. Collins Posted on April 19, 2015 at 12:11 pm Updated: April 19, 2015 at 1:23 pm
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“Obama Expected To Support Medical Pot Reform On National Television”


President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama is expected to express his support for medical marijuana, and a drug policy that deviates from incarceration, in a CNN documentary to air on Sunday night.
In the television special, “Weeds 3”, CNN chief medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta will explore the politics of medical marijuana research. In an interview with Obama, Gupta probes the President about a bipartisan Senate bill that, if passed, will change marijuana’s classification from Schedule I — the most stringent category for regulating drugs — to Schedule II.
Obama, who admitted to smoking marijuana as a youth, reiterates a position that he took earlier his presidency, according to a Huffington Post preview of the show. He tells Gupta that he endorses a policy solution that has a foundation in science and focuses on treatment more than punishment of drug users.
“You know, I think I’d have to take a look at the details, but I’m on record as saying that not only do I think carefully prescribed medical use of marijuana may in fact be appropriate and we should follow the science as opposed to ideology on this issue, but I’m also on record as saying that the more we treat some of these issues related to drug abuse from a public health model and not just from an incarceration model, the better off we’re going to be,” Obama reportedly says during his interview with Gupta.
Nearly two dozen states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana and residents of 13 states can use extracts of the plant to treat certain medical conditions. The debate about the plant, specifically its healing properties, has intensified with the release of scientific research that confirms the plant’s ability to treat certain cancers, confirming what proponents of legalization have argued for years.
Since California legalized medical marijuana in the mid-1990s, public opinion about the issue has become more positive, with a recent survey showing that more than 70 percent of Americans favor medical marijuana. Support for legalization has increased among voters in the swing states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida. Some lawmakers in Illinois …Read More

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