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Dayton further explains his stand on medical marijuana

Gov. Mark Dayton denied Friday that he had suggested to mothers of children with seizure disorders that they obtain medical marijuana on the streets.

In a State Capitol press conference on issues ranging from a new Senate office building to indexing the minimum wage, Dayton further said that he would follow the advice of his commissioners and medical professionals on the issue of legalizing medical marijuana and that he did not think it would be wise to bypass the protocols of testing, manufacturing and releasing a drug to consumers.

“This is first and foremost a medical question,” he said. “[The] Minnesota Medical Association, Minnesota Psychiatric Association, social service providers, Minnesota Epilepsy Association, are all opposed to legalization of medical marijuana for exactly the reasons I thought that [state Health] Commissioner Ehlinger and many other key commissioners stated very well in a piece they published a couple of weeks ago.”

(Dayton also has said that he would defer to law-enforcement officials on the issue.)

“I greatly sympathize” with those whose children are suffering, he said Friday. “But we’re making policy here, passing laws, for 5.3 million people. And I believe that at this present time the information that we have available, particularly on the medical side, this is the best judgment, this is best for most Minnesotans.”

When asked if this issue had been personally hard for him, Dayton said: “It’s very hard to be vilified. It’s very hard to be told that I don’t care about people and their suffering and the like. That’s why I’m in this pursuit – to help people and relieve their pain and suffering.”

Comments (5)

  1. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 03/29/2014 - 08:46 am.

    More Study?

    Come on Governor, what is there to study? The thousands of lives we have destroyed because of these 1500 inquisition type laws? The police/military state we have created, and support with billions of $ needlessly wasted every year on incarceration? The gangs we finance, the neighborhoods and families we destroy? The wars and deaths we fuel south of the boarder, the gang violence we fuel here at home?
    Governor, it is long past time to end these ignorance based drug wars and move out of the 1500 inquisition style laws.
    Can we please start living like an intelligent society one of these days?

  2. Submitted by Rebecca Wentz on 03/29/2014 - 02:11 pm.

    legalization of medicinal marijuanna

    Gov Dayton doesn’t at all care about his constituents!! Come seriously since when should law enforcement be allowed to help create laws? It’s their job to enforce the law not help make them!!! Of course law enforcement isn’t going to get on board it effects their bottom line to take pot off the streets it means less crime and less men and women in the prison system. They make money off the prison system!!! And remember Dayton is old money and while I voted for him I will not vote for him again. He has repeatedly thrown the poor and the infirm under the bus. Bottom line is he cares only for the middle class with children and like every other elected official their pocket book. Pay attention to what hes done and is doing now. Now its pot last year it was people who are poor and haven’t been able to find work. He says he has created jobs in Minnesota and he has but most of the people who are unemployed don’t meet the education requirements to get these jobs. If he would just man up and legalize pot whether recreationally or medicinally he’d create thousands of jobs with the dispensaries that would be opened. That means cashier work and manufacturing work not to mention horticulture jobs so once again he shows his true colors and everyone says hes doing such a good job i say where??!!! I will give you an example: I am a cashier by trade i am 44 years old and have been out of the job market for almost 5 years not by my choice but because i was blackballed by my previous employer because of our employment law in this state i couldnt take them to court. I decided last year to go back to school and because i’m not working 20 hrs a week i lost my food support the problem is no where in any letter i recieved about exemptions did it say if i was a student id also have to work 20 hrs a week to keep my benefits and when you work 20 hrs a week you dont qualify for snap if you dont have children. im not letting any of this stop me though. i will be done with school in 6 months and ill have a job when im done but our lawmakers are consistently keeping the poor poor and the sick sick because who benefits? they do they get kick backs for the health care industry who is the most effected besides law enforcement if pot is made legal? the health care industry because i know for myself and everyone i know we would rather smoke a joint to help our pain both mental and physical instead of taking pills that give side effects so we have to take more pills our system is poisoning us and our children daily and we let it happen STAND UP AND SAY IDLE NO MORE!!!!!! Stand up and say we vote for you therefore we give you our jobs start doing whats best for ALL of the people instead of whats best for yourselves and your bottom line!!! They are suposed to be our voice and they aren’t listening!!! I haven’t had one elected officials respond to any e mail phone message or letter i’ve written about the welfare laws or any other issue from mpls city council all the way to gov daytons office

  3. Submitted by Rebecca Wentz on 03/29/2014 - 02:16 pm.

    pot legalization etc

    I should also state that i walk from north minneapolis to franklin and cedar aves every day mon thru fri to get to school because i don’t have the income to get to school any other way i physically cant do the job im trained in any more but because i can get a job i dont get cash benefits as of now i only recieve medical financial aid only covered school and a few living expenses. If I could be pot prescribed to me by my doctor id be in a better position to do that job for the next 6 months i dont expect people to feel sorry for me i just want people to open their eyes to the reality of what myself and countless other poor minnesotans face everyday seriously stop doing all the research stop giving yourself raises while people in this state go hungry legalize it already and show you care more for the people of the state than you own bottom line

  4. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 03/30/2014 - 07:54 pm.

    The problem

    is that there is no such thing as medical cannabis — yet.
    The reason is that the only marijuana legally available to researchers is that grown by the Federal government, and that is doled out to people who state in their proposals that they are investigating its harmful effects.
    No surprise, therefore, that there is little data supporting positive medical effects, but there is data on the harmful effects. This is a problem on the Federal level — there is little that a State governor can do about it.
    That answer is a change in Federal law and law enforcement policy the decriminalizes cannabis immediately, and supports the unbiased research necessary to do a proper cost/benefit analysis.

  5. Submitted by Todd Hintz on 03/31/2014 - 04:48 pm.


    Oh for the love of Todd stop studying this to death and just legalize it. And not just legalize medical marijuana, but do the whole enchilada in one shot.

    We saw this whole “study it to death” routine in the 1980s when Reagan didn’t want to make a decision about AIDS treatments. Just bury your head in the sand and study study study so you don’t have to come down one way or another on a potentially controversial issue. Grow a pair, legalize pot, and if it hurts you in the polls come November, then so be it. There will be a lot more people who have respect for the Governor for making a decision and moving this state forward instead of back into the 1950s.

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