The former and possible future first daughter of the United States acknowledges that marijuana has medical value, but she also seems to believe that cannabis use can lead to death.
“Anecdotally we have lots of evidence in…epilepsy but also in autism, in stimulating appetite for people who are on intensive chemotherapy regimens, for people who have non-epilepsy seizure disorders and challenges,” Chelsea Clinton said on Saturday.
“But we also have anecdotal evidence now from Colorado where some of the people who were taking marijuana for those purposes, the coroner believes, after they died, there was drug interactions with other things they were taking.”
Clinton, the daughter of presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and former President Bill Clinton, was answering a question about her mother’s position on marijuana rescheduling during an appearance before a group of students at Youngstown State University in Ohio.
The Clinton campaign did not respond to Marijuana.com’s request for clarification about what the candidate’s daughter was referring to in implying that marijuana use has been tied to deaths apparently caused by its interaction with other drugs.
Legalization opponents have attempted to blame a handful of deaths in Colorado on cannabis edibles, but in those cases — one in which a college student visiting the state from Wyoming leapt off a balcony and one in which a man shot his wife to death — no other drugs were involved, so there are no “interactions” to speak of. And in the latter case, the suspect did not die so there was no coroner examination of him.
Elsewhere in the weekend remarks, Clinton reiterated her mother’s pledge to respect the right of states to implement their own marijuana laws without federal interference.
“She supports states making whatever choices they think are right vis–à–vis medical or recreational marijuana use,” she said.
But while candidate Clinton has said she is “100 percent in favor of medical uses for marijuana,” Chelsea implied that she wants cannabis to go through the Food and Drug Administration approval process, which she called the “gold standard for the world” even though the agency has approved a number of drugs that later proved to be very dangerous.
“We just need so much more data than we have so that people who might benefit have the chance to benefit, people who might be in danger are protected,” she said. “So absolutely my mom strongly supports the need for more rigorous study and then subjecting it, as we do kind of everything else that might have a medicinal purpose, to FDA approval, scrutiny and ultimately regulation.”
Her mother has promised that if elected she will reclassify marijuana to Schedule II from its current status under Schedule I, the most restrictive category.
Last month, the Drug Enforcement Administration, acting on a recommendation from FDA, denied long-pending petitions to reschedule cannabis.
Clinton and Republican opponent Donald Trump face off in the first of three scheduled presidential debates Monday night.
It has been suggested that Clinton’s struggling outreach to millennial voters could be strengthened by endorsing marijuana legalization. Young people overwhelmingly support ending cannabis prohibition, and polls show that a sizable chunk are now supporting Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and the Green Party’s Jill Stein, both of whom have made marijuana law reform centerpieces of their campaigns.
To see what else Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have said about cannabis law reform, check out Marijuana.com’s comprehensive guide to the candidates.
Photo Courtesy of Allie Beckett.