John McCain On Medical Marijuana

A group of New Hampshire voters have been asking each of the Presidential candidates their views on whether people who need it should be permitted to use, here’s what John McCain had to say on September 30th:

The funny thing is, McCain should’ve known better:

It’s refreshing that McCain is willing to state his position with such unvarnished candor. It would be even better if he knew what he was talking about.

Apparently he missed the news that federal agents recently raided the home of Leonard French, a paraplegic who had been authorized under New Mexico law to use cannabis for his condition. He now faces possible federal charges, not to mention that he was deprived of the medicine recommended by his doctor.

As for medical experts, McCain could easily find plenty who testify to the therapeutic value of pot. The American Academy of HIV Medicine says that “when appropriately prescribed and monitored, marijuana/cannabis can provide immeasurable benefits for the health and well-being of our patients.”

The New England Journal of Medicine has called the federal ban on medical marijuana “misguided, heavy-handed, and inhumane.” A 1999 report by the federal Institute of Medicine concluded, “Scientific data indicate the potential therapeutic value of cannabinoid drugs for pain relief, control of nausea and vomiting, and appetite stimulation.”

But, then, maybe not, because even when he was presented with evidence, McCain still refused to change his mind:

And, apparently, even the will of the people doesn’t mean much to the Captain of the Straight Talk Express:

There was a bizarre exchange on medical marijuana in the just- completed John McCain blogger call.

A questioner named Jonathan (I didn’t get his full name) asked, “Should federal law supersede the will of the people in a given state when it comes to medical marijuana?”

McCain started chuckling. “The will of the people, my friend, is that medical marijuana is not something that the quote ‘people’ want,” he responded. “Certain people feel strongly about this issue, and they show up at most town hall meetings, obviously feel very strongly about it. There is no convincing evidence…there’s evidence, but no convincing evidence to me that medical marijuana relief of pain and suffering cannot be accomplished by prescriptions from doctors… So, when you’re talking about the will of the people, you’re going to have to show me the will of the people besides the will of a small number of people who feel very strongly about the issue, as obviously you do.”

The questioner mentioned that voters approved of medical marijuana in a California referendum.

“There may be times when the will of the people, for example Iraq, the will of the people, unfortunately is that we withdraw from Iraq immediately or very very soon,” McCain shot back. “I don’t share that view of the will of the people. And I think the will of the people was that we get out of Korea when Harry Truman was president of the United States, but then he decided to do what he thought was best for the will of the country. Now, I don’t compare this issue with Iraq or Korea, but, look, I’ll be glad to continue this discussion, and read the stuff about it, but I am not changing my position on quote ‘medical marijuana,’ okay?”

I suppose we shouldn’t be shocked by this.

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  • Kat

    So, McCain thinks that the job of the president is to do what is best for the country, despite the fact that majority of the people he serves desire something he does not? Maybe he should review the grounds for presidential impeachment.

  • Brad Warbiany

    I love the response on the blogger call:

    McCain: “Well, I don’t support it because it’s not the will of the people.”

    Jonathan: “But what about when it is the will of the people, as expressed by their votes?”

    McCain: “Well, the will of the people doesn’t mean anything to me anyway, I know better than they do.”

    Yet another reason that I will never vote for John McCain to sit in the White House.

  • Jeff

    John McCain’s attitude towards marijuana is still in the “Reefer Madness” frame of mind. He still believes the lies put out by Harry Anslinger in his 1930 “Fear and Smear Campain Against Marijuana,” when he and the FBN (Federal Bureau of Narcotics) predeccessor of the DEA made the possession, selling,growing, transporting and/or the use of marijuana illegal. Saying that the use of mariujuana will drive a person criminally insane and that white women will want and seek out sex with black men, he even went so far as to say that minorities (mexicans and blacks) think they are equal to white people if they smoke marijuana. My God we can’t have that you know people thinking that they are equal no matter what race they are. God forbid if we had a law that states “All men are created equal by their creator and entitled to certain rights like life, liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” boy are we lucky nothing like this exist’s in the writing of our country’s laws, or at least that’s what our federal governments believes in it’s corrupted political heart. While our government flies right in the face of evidence of the medical efficacy of marijuana, not wanting any positive effects of marijuana known to the public, keeps all research info recommending the changing of the laws against marijuana in the USA under the rug. So people who are against marijuana use are the ones who still believe the lies put out in 1930’s by our federal government who are still putting out misinformation on the use of marijuana, on the DEA or any other gov website. Here’s to legalized marijuana for medical and recreational use, for it is the safest drug known to man with a very positive effect that relieves nausea, pain, etc., etc., etc., even after the euphoria wears off. I smoked marijuana for 27 years and quit cold turkey due to boredom. I suffered NO withdrawal or uncomfortable feeling. It didn’t even disturnb my sleep cycle. Proving that marijuana is NOT addictive. Here’s praying that marijuana will be legalized on the federal level, regulated, sold and taxed by the federal government like alcohol and nicotine. Which is proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that alcohol and nicotine are far more dangerous to our health as a people and a nation than marijuana could ever be. So vote out the naysayers and ignorant politicians and vote in those who are educated, not prejudiced politically or otherwise, towards marijuana. So this nation can offer a much better quality of life to it’s terminally ill patients and those with life long diseases, plus offer the safest recreational drug known to man. After all it has been used since 6000 B.C. with 2000 years of documented medical safety and use. So why did our country feel compelled to make marijuana illegal. Racial prejudice was/is the primary factor. However in the major cities in the USA the WASP is a minority today. Which was not the case 50 years ago. Statistics show there are millions of marijuana smokers in America ranging in age from teens to seniors, and has been for 47 years. Why then don’t we hear of thousands of deaths a year, as we have with alcohol and nicotine, or injuries to the human condition as a result of marijuana use? Because it is not addictive, cancer causing, or any detremental effect exists with using marijuana except for the laws created by biased, prejudice, close minded and ignorant people. Prison is the most dangerous effect marijuana has on the human condition. America must change it’s laws pertaining to marijuana or we will see another civil war. A whole new slant on the war on drugs. This war is where the people fight with their government to be realistic, caring, and compassionte enough to admit the medical efficacy of marijuana and legalize it nationwide. Who knows maybe we will see a large drop in alcohol and nicotine consumption and related deaths which could only make this a safer, healthier contry to live in. I, however, can’t wait so I am forced to move to the west coast where I can live a much better quality of life legally. Federal laws against marijuana must be changed now, VOTE for Maruana law reform in 2008! Peace be with you…

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  • Jared

    Im loving the guy in the back raising his hand the whole time.

  • http://n/a A Stern

    Some medical marijuana advocacy group, like Americans for Safe Access, should:

    1) Print out the thousands and thousands of peer-reviewed research/studies and medical history on marijuana (quite a labor-intensive task).

    2) Put the research and medical history in many boxes.

    3) Then, put research by McCain’s/Guliania’s/ Romney’s/ Thompson’s door with the boxes AND at least 100 medical marijuana patients (leave the vomit on the floor).

    Don’t exclude the very sick — if they would like to vomit in front of these Pharmaceutical Reps’ doors (remind these Pharma Reps that approx. 100,000 people die each year, from their superior meds; not a single death in 5000 years for marijuana — JAMA estimates. Also remind them about the National Academy of Sciences’Institute of Medicine’s statement that there “will always be a sub-population who do not respond to normal medication regimens.”).

    A lot of vomit will make a nice visual. Hopefully, the candidates will slip and get the vomit all over them (they can’t ignore patients and try to convey themselves as “moral” anymore, without getting a little dirty).

    4) Do this on a day McCain and the rest of them will be in their DC offices, or get Guliania (Guliani & primma donna) at his law firm in NYC.

    5)Invite all the major and not-major media outlets. Film the candidates’ reactions. Take photos constantly. Give film to all major news outlets.

    Do It ASAP, to cut these bullies off at the knees.
    Expose these guys’ true EVIL nature, before it is too late.