Orangeburg, SC: Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton called for amending the federal classification of cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule II during a campaign stop this weekend.
Fellow Democrat presidential candidate Martin O’Malley had previously said that, if elected, he would move cannabis to Schedule II via executive order. Republican candidate Rand Paul (KY) is the co-sponsor of Senate legislation to reclassify the substance. Last week, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders introduced legislation, "The Ending Federal Prohibition Act of 2015," to remove marijuana from the US Controlled Substances Act altogether.
In her remarks, Clinton alleged that scientists "haven’t done any research" on the safety and potential therapeutic efficacy. However, a keyword search on National Library of Medicine database yields thousands of scientific papers specific to cannabis and its effects. The findings of a recent review of FDA-approved clinical trials assessing the safety and therapeutic efficacy of herbal cannabis in various patient populations reported, "Based on evidence currently available the Schedule I classification is not tenable; it is not accurate that cannabis has no medical value, or that information on safety is lacking."
Commenting on Clinton’s statements, NORML Political Director Danielle Keane said: "Rescheduling cannabis to Schedule II under the federal law would classify marijuana in a similar manner as cocaine. Such placement is inconsistent with the plant’s safety profile and would largely continue its prohibitive status. Like alcohol and tobacco, cannabis ought to be descheduled, thus providing states the power to establish their own marijuana policies free from federal interference."
For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director, at: firstname.lastname@example.org or Danielle Keane, NORML Political Director, at (202) 483-5500.