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Hillary Clinton Pledges to End Medical Cannabis Raids; McCain Flip-Flops PDF Print E-mail
U.S.'s Second Largest Cancer Charity Calls for Legal
Medical Cannabis Access as Candidates Weigh Support

MANCHESTER, NEW HAMPSHIRE (GSMM): Two prominent presidential contenders have moved in opposite directions on the issue of federal attacks on medical cannabis patients, as America's second largest cancer charity, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, came out strongly for protection of medical cannabis patients. Democratic frontrunner Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) called for an end to federal raids in states where medical use of cannabis is legal, while Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) backtracked on an earlier promise to end the raids.

During a Manchester campaign on July 13, Len Epstein, a volunteer for Granite Staters for Medical Marijuana (GSMM), told Sen. Clinton, "Twelve states allow medical [cannabis], but the Bush administration continues to raid patients," to which she responded, "Yes, I know. It's terrible." Epstein then asked, "Would you stop the federal raids?" Sen. Clinton responded firmly, "Yes, I will."

The following day in Claremont, Sen. McCain held a town hall meeting at which he was asked about his stance on medical cannabis. When asked in April about ending the medical cannabis raids, McCain had responded, "I will let states decide that issue."

But this time, when GSMM campaign manager Stuart Cooper asked Sen. McCain if he still supported ending the raids, he went into headlong retreat. "Not yet," he said. "I don't think marijuana is healthy, I don't think that it is good for people, and there is a large body of medical opinion that says there is plenty of other medications that are more effective and better and less damaging to one's health to use to relieve pain. So I will continue to look at it on your behalf and many other young people who feel very strongly about it, but right now my answer to you is no."

"Apparently the 'Straight Talk Express' just became the Bob-and-Weave Express," Cooper said. "In addition to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, medical groups such as the American Public Health Association and the American Nurses Association strongly support protection for medical cannabis patients, and the presidential candidates should understand that Americans don't want suffering patients arrested."
 
Source: Michael Hess, BBS News, July 17 2007 - http://bbsnews.net/article.php/20070717133158914
 
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