Last Updated:October 24 @ 10:15 pm

Ryan: States have right to legalize medical marijuana

By Kristen Wyatt and Nicholas Riccardi

DENVER (AP) — Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan says the federal governmentshouldn't interfere with states that have legalized medical marijuana.

The Wisconsin congressman tells KRDO-TV in Colorado Springs that he personally doesn't approve ofmedical marijuana laws. But he says that states should have the right to choose whether to legalize the drug for medical purposes.

In response to a reporter's question, Ryan said: "It's up to Coloradans to decide."

The interview was taped while Ryan campaigned this week in Colorado Springs and aired Friday.

Colorado is one of 17 states, plus the District of Columbia, that allow medical marijuana.

The Obama administration at first signaled that it wouldn't interfere with state-sanctioned marijuana distribution. But the Justice Department has since angered marijuana activists by shutting down dispensaries in California and Colorado.

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18 Comments

  1. cynicalpeteComment by cynicalpete
    September 8, 2012 @ 9:13 am

    Ryan has a great amount of wisdom which is lacking with many politicians. Making Marijuana legal, if it is the wish of the voters, would destroy 90% of the drug cartel and would reduce a large percentage of crime in the USA saving billions of dollars of taxpayers money. This would be one of the great steps toward reducing the National debt.The justice department would have to reduce the number of their employees so this is the reason they are against it.

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    • WinghunterComment by Winghunter
      September 8, 2012 @ 1:04 pm

      “To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.” – Thomas Paine

      Marijuana Is NOT Medicine
      Somebody Had Better Tell Your Doctor! http://bit.ly/ed9Acr

      Cannabis smoking ‘permanently lowers IQ’ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/9426205/Cannabis-smoking-permanently-lowers-IQ.html

      Scientists discover Marijuana impairs working memory http://p.ost.im/p/ew3dDD

      A Clear Danger from Cannabis (Schizophrenia)
      http://bit.ly/2dyRwB

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    • siquijorislandComment by siquijorisland
      September 9, 2012 @ 12:23 am

      just when i thought smoking was bad and second hand smoke could kill. We hear that smoking is medicine and second hand smoke is not a real problem.
      We must be evolving on the issue of what kind of smoke is OK.

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    • swanComment by swan
      September 9, 2012 @ 5:25 pm

      I agree with cynicalpete, and we need to get this country back on the path of a limited federal government. This issue and probably 95% of every other one should be left to each individual state. We are not just America, we are the United States of America!

      I have lost a grandpa, two close friends, and five other friends to cancer. My uncle is a survivor and so are two close friends and two other friends. Of these people, seven said marijuana helped them with their appetite to feel a bit better and helped them to eat. If someone wants to deny people their rights and personal decisions in these cases, they would have to be a little sick themselves.

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    • Mort_fComment by Mort_f
      September 9, 2012 @ 5:51 pm

      Swan,
      My father was 90 when he passed away. Prostate cancer was a factor, but not the cause. At 85 he was told to give up his pipe and salami, two of his remaining pleasures. No, the government did not tell him, but the same principle applies. Under the new system, I fully expect that today it would have been a government mandate to him. Enough of the ‘nanny’ mentality.

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  2. Bob KnowsComment by Bob Knows
    September 8, 2012 @ 9:39 am

    Ryan is right. The Constitution does NOT give the feds authority to tell people what we have to buy, nor what we cannot buy. Amendment 10 delegates that authority to the several states. We need a return to CONSTITUTIONAL government.

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  3. cxComment by genesal
    September 8, 2012 @ 10:09 am

    Ryan is right, alright. But this is not the time to start sounding like Ron Paul. Let’s win the election first.

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  4. Mort_fComment by Mort_f
    September 8, 2012 @ 10:13 am

    I would hope that the key word here is ‘MEDICAL’. With appropriate restrictions on driving after its usage. Perhaps even a page from Europe, where certain classes of drivers are required to have sticker on their vehicle which announces their restriction. That would not be an unusual requirement, my friend in South Carolina is now totally restricted from driving for 6 months due to his recent medical procedure.

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    • middlegroundComment by middleground
      September 8, 2012 @ 11:26 am

      I really like this suggestion. I personally don’t want somebody high on pot driving on the same road I’m on or operating machinery. You want to be a pothead. Fine, but stay away from any situation where you will be a danger to others. Freedom works both ways and most people don’t want the extra risk and danger; moreover, how do you handle insurance for a pothead driver?

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  5. ladylibertyComment by ladyliberty
    September 8, 2012 @ 2:25 pm

    You are incredibly naive if you think you’re not on the road with pot smoking drivers NOW, or that potheads aren’t operating dangerous machinery. According to my mother, who was an adult during Alcohol Prohibition (backed up by statistics I’ve read), alcohol consumption dramatically DECREASED when Prohibition was repealed. If you are truly concerned about safety, legalize marijuana and watch usage plummet.

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    • cxComment by genesal
      September 8, 2012 @ 2:48 pm

      Dang, even the pot smokers are building the automobiles, that people are driving, while they are high.

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  6. PATRIOTComment by PATRIOT
    September 9, 2012 @ 8:42 am

    We have had many years of bad experiences with alcohol. Scores of people have been injured in one way or the other or killed due to the use of this legal drug. It does not make sense to make our drug problem larger by legalizing another mind altering substance. The use of marijuana, as with any other mind altering drug has a negative impact on society too numerous to discuss here. Legalization will only make the drug easier to get, especially by children. The problems associated with marijuana legalization can be seen by taking a look at the European countries that have fallen into this trap.

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    • Mort_fComment by Mort_f
      September 9, 2012 @ 9:34 am

      Narcotics, opiates, and all those other drugs have their proper place in society. Look at a medics field kit, I doubt if it has changed. But that ‘place’ should be for strictly medical reasons. Never for ‘recreational’ use.

      Even for medical usage, there are the potential for unexpected results. No, I do not have total confidence in the medical profession, nor the FDA. For examples, even the simple aspirin can be the cause of ulcers. I had a recent life threatening result from a blood pressure medication that I had been taking for many years. Many of the common drugs that many take for granted may be extremely dangerous when taken with other common medications. Even natural ingredients can cause problems. For those who take statins, a cholesterol medication to reduce heart attack problems, the label tells you to eliminate grapefruit from your diet. Grapefruit?

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  7. ladylibertyComment by ladyliberty
    September 9, 2012 @ 1:52 pm

    Let’s stick with facts and not unfounded generalities born of prejudice, please. I do not consume marijuana (smoking is only one method of ingestion— many use it in capsule form, made into foodstuffs, via nebulizers, etc.). As a matter of fact, I rarely take so much as an aspirin. However, I have a strong affinity with truth. Anyone wishing to be truly informed on the subject would do well to read http://libertycrier.com/government/top-10-cannabis-studies-the-government-wished-it-had-never-funded/

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  8. ladylibertyComment by ladyliberty
    September 9, 2012 @ 2:04 pm

    Additionally, I’m afraid Patriot is mistaken in the assertion that “The problems associated with marijuana legalization can be seen by taking a look at the European countries that have fallen into this trap.” Please see the Forbes article, which states “Ten years ago, Portugal decriminalized all drugs. One decade after this unprecedented experiment, drug abuse is down by half.” http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2011/07/05/ten-years-after-decriminalization-drug-abuse-down-by-half-in-portugal/

    Please, friends. We have enough problems with the Democrats being ignorant, spreading false information, asserting opinion as fact and preying on people’s fears. We’re the “good guys” and should not emulate them.

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  9. cxComment by genesal
    September 9, 2012 @ 2:08 pm

    You still shouldn’t operate such as a automobile no matter the method of consumption. What about Hashish which is just another form of marijuana?

    The actual subject is: Medical Maryjane approval not Recreational Marihuana. It seems that at least in California they are one in the same, Medical and Recreational.
    The TRUTH is that it should be a state decision such as marriage and licensing for driving, hunting, fishing, education and many other activities.

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    • ladylibertyComment by ladyliberty
      September 9, 2012 @ 6:15 pm

      Please don’t set up straw men. No one here has claimed that one should operate a vehicle or other dangerous machinery under the influence of ANYTHING.

      We certainly agree with each other (and with Paul Ryan) that many (most?) issues, including marijuana, should be made at the State level, not Federal. The Enumerated Powers of the federal government are very few and limited. Back to the Constitution! One of my pet peeves is Federal interference in education. Don’t get me started on that one!

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    • cxComment by genesal
      September 9, 2012 @ 7:03 pm

      Then what’s going to keep the Medical Marijuana users off the road when their high. Doesn’t seem to work that way now and it certainly doesn’t work with legal alcohol now does it. Or for that matter illegal pills, powders, and other opiates. You can’t keep any of them off the road now.

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