Candidate Dean Bending on Medical Marijuana 6/20/03

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According to the Saturday, June 14 installment of the "Dem Convention Diary" section of WisPolitics.com (http://www.wispolitics.com/freeser/features/f0306/f0306demconv/f03061303.html), "Howard Dean and veteran Madison marijuana advocate Ben Masel faced off in an impromptu hallway debate on medical marijuana Friday night." Masel told WisPolitics.com, "It's hard to be the peace guy and blow off the potheads."

In an e-mail sent to fellow drug reformers, Masel reported that Dean, recent former governor of Vermont, used the occasion to "clarify" his position on medical marijuana, which has reported to be anti. According to Masel, Dean claimed he opposed the Vermont medical marijuana bill because he does not believe "medical decisions should be made by legislatures."

Dean proclaimed that as president, he would "on the day I take office direct the FDA to take a fresh look at the existing studies, and issue a report in 60 days," and would then implement the report. Dean then added that "speaking not as a candidate, but as a physician," he would "expect the report to recommend marijuana be approved for chemotherapy and AIDS, but not for glaucoma, because we have new medications for glaucoma that are even better. And no medication is completely safe."

Principle or posture? Clarification or Concession? You, the voter, decide.

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