Obama and Medical Pot: More Research Needed
Barack Obama is not a supporter of medical marijuana. He is a supporter of more research to determine if it helps reduce pain.
When a voter asked Obama if he was for the legalization of medical marijuana, Obama said that he wasn't in favor of legalization without scientific evidence and tight controls.
..."My attitude is if the science and the doctors suggest that the best palliative care and the way to relieve pain and suffering is medical marijuana then that's something I'm open to ..... (my emphasis).....He added that he was concerned that the reasons for the use of marijuana would grow and create a "slippery slope."
There is a plethora of research showing that medicinal pot reduces pain and relieves disease symptoms.[More....]
Despite continued political debates regarding the legality of medicinal marijuana, clinical investigations of the therapeutic use of cannabinoids are now more prevalent than at any time in history. A search of the National Library of Medicine's PubMed website quantifies this fact. A keyword search using the terms "cannabinoids, 1996" reveals just 258 scientific journal articles published on the subject for that year. Perform this same search for the year 2006, and one will find close to 1,000 published scientific studies.
Studies are now underway to determine if it also slows the progression of various diseases:
As clinical research into the therapeutic value of cannabinoids has proliferated exponentially, so too has investigators' understanding of cannabis' remarkable capability to combat disease. Whereas researchers in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s primarily assessed cannabis' ability to temporarily alleviate various disease symptoms — such as the nausea associated with cancer chemotherapy — scientists today are exploring the potential role of cannabinoids to alter disease progression. Of particular interest, scientists are investigating cannabinoids' capacity to moderate autoimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and inflammatory bowel disease, as well as their role in the treatment of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (a.k.a. Lou Gehrig's disease.)
All of the Democratic candidates have endorsed ending federal raids on medical marijuana clinics in the states that have legalized marijuana. Obama was the last of the ten to do so.
In short, Obama is a lot like Hillary on the subject of marijuana: Both want more research for medical marijuana, both would end federal raids in states where medical pot is legal, and neither favor decriminalization.
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