Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Now Pro to Medical Marijuana

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Harry Reid.

Source: Karoun Demirjian, “Legalized Medicinal Pot Has New Supporter: Harry Reid,” lasvegassun.com, Jan. 16, 2014

Harry Reid, the US Senate Majority Leader, now favors medical marijuana, according to an interview with the Las Vegas Sun. Reid’s statement came as a response to several Nevada municipalities issuing moratoriums on medical marijuana dispensaries. 

When asked about his opinion on whether medical marijuana should be legal Reid said, “if you’d asked me this question a dozen years ago, it would have been easy to answer. I would have said no, because (marijuana) leads to other stuff. But I can’t say that anymore. I think we need to take a real close look at this. I think that there’s some medical reasons for marijuana.”

Reid attributed his changing stance to reading news stories about individuals using marijuana and speaking to people he has known personally who have used marijuana to relieve symptoms associated with seizures, kidney failure, and other “conditions with no other treatment or cure.”

In Nevada, voters approved Question 9 in 2000 to amend the state’s constitution to recognize the medical use of marijuana. The law took effect Oct. 1, 2001. The cities of Las Vegas, Henderson, and Yerington have since placed moratoriums on applications, permits, and licensing for medical dispensaries while they figure out how to regulate the industry.

20 states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana, while six other states have pending legislation to do the same.

The federal government placed marijuana in Schedule I, the most restrictive of its five drug schedules, because it considers marijuana to have a “high potential for abuse,” “no currently accepted medical use,” and “a lack of accepted safety.”

Sources:

Karoun Demirjian, “Legalized Medicinal Pot Has New Supporter: Harry Reid,” lasvegassun.com, Jan. 16, 2014

Caitlin Macneal, “Reid Comes Out in Support of Medical Marijuana,” talkingpointsmemo.com, Jan. 16, 2014

Phillip Smith, “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Supports Medical Marijuana,” stopthedrugwar.org, Jan. 17, 2014