Minnesota governor's medical marijuana flip-flop - KMSP-TV

MEDICAL MARIJUANA: Gov. Dayton's 'regret' and latest stance

Posted: Updated:
ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton on Wednesday clarified his stance on medical marijuana, urging all stakeholders to work toward passing compassionate legislation this session.

"My comment yesterday, in which I referred to 'the advocates who want to legalize medical marijuana and be able to smoke marijuana plants and leaves…' was in no way intended to refer to victims of terrible diseases or their parents, who I was trying to help," Dayton said in a statement. "I regret that my words were unclear."

MORE: Full statement from Gov. Mark Dayton

The fact is, the latest proposed legislation removed smoking as an option and even offered to add penalties for those who would smoke medical marijuana.

Rep. Carly Melin, assistant majority leader and the chief sponsor of the bill in the House, said she believes she has the votes to pass H.F. 1818 in both the House and Senate this session.

FOR THE CHILDREN

The governor said a new proposal to make medical marijuana available to children suffering from intractable seizures has the support of his administration, Minnesota law enforcement, the Mayo Clinic and the Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota.

'SMOKE AND MIRRORS'

Families advocating a medical marijuana bill criticized Gov. Dayton for stalling legislation, and called his compromise "smoke and mirrors."


PHOTO: Medical marijuana advocates at the Minnesota Capitol

Just weeks earlier, advocates appeared optimistic following a one-on-one meeting with Dayton that prompted him to immediately direct staff members toward a solution.

"Two weeks ago, I met with some of those parents, as well as some adult sufferers, and was deeply moved by their anguish. My Commissioner of Health, Chief of Staff, and other advisors made a sincere effort to find a legal means to make a form of ‘medical marijuana' available to children and youths, who might benefit from it.," Dayton said in a statement. "I regret that this proposal was rejected."

Despite his renewed support for narrower, compassionate legislation, Dayton said "there's no shortage of evidence regarding marijuana's negative effects on individuals and communities," listing the following:

- Marijuana can disrupt learning and impair memory;

- Marijuana can exacerbate mental illness;

- Marijuana can increase blood pressure, heart rate, and heart attack risk;

- Using marijuana during pregnancy can harm a baby's brain development;

- Marijuana can impair drivers, causing automobile crashes that kill or injure innocent people….'

"Despite these valid concerns, my administration has worked with stakeholders on all sides of this issue to find a compromise solution that can pass during this legislative session," Dayton said. "I urge stakeholders on all sides of this issue to work together on this proposal, agree on a compromise that can pass in the Legislature this session, and provide relief this year to children who will otherwise find none if we instead choose to engage in finger-pointing, and a protracted political debate."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • 16-year-old paralyzed in ATV crash saved girlfriend

    16-year-old paralyzed in ATV crash saved girlfriend

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 4:13 PM EDT2014-08-19 20:13:47 GMT
    His life may never be the same, but the 16-year-old running back from Hinckley High School was able to get his girlfriend to safety when the unthinkable happened while the two were riding his four-wheeler.
    His life may never be the same, but the 16-year-old running back from Hinckley High School was able to get his girlfriend to safety when the unthinkable happened while the two were riding his four-wheeler.
  • 28 new foods at Minnesota State Fair in 2014

    28 new foods at Minnesota State Fair in 2014

    Wednesday, June 25 2014 2:57 PM EDT2014-06-25 18:57:53 GMT
    The Minnesota State Fair is adding 28 new foods to the already massive, artery-clogging list of 500 foods from 300 different vendors. New food include everything from a bacon-wrapped turkey leg and beer gelato to a shrimp dog and chocolate salami.
    The Minnesota State Fair is adding 28 new foods to the already massive, artery-clogging list of 500 foods from 300 different vendors. New food include everything from a bacon-wrapped turkey leg and beer gelato to a shrimp dog and chocolate salami.
  • New app won't let kids ignore calls from parents

    New app won't let kids ignore calls from parents

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 11:42 AM EDT2014-08-19 15:42:22 GMT
    Giving a child a cell phone doesn't always mean they'll answer when their parents call. Now, there's an app for that.
    Giving a child a cell phone doesn't always mean they'll answer when their parents call. Now, there's an app for that.
Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices