Chelsea Clinton ‘misspoke’ on marijuana risks, spokeswoman says

By Christopher Ingraham

Chelsea Clinton, daughter of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, addresses the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in July. (Photo by Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

Speaking at a town hall at Youngstown State University over the weekend, Chelsea Clinton made a remark about the risks of marijuana use that left many drug reform advocates scratching their heads. The daughter of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton suggested that legal marijuana use had contributed to the deaths of people who were using other drugs simultaneously, due to a bad drug interaction.

A spokeswoman for Chelsea Clinton now says that the Democratic presidential candidate’s daughter simply misspoke.

An audience member had asked the younger Clinton about her mother’s support for changing the federal regulatory status of marijuana to allow more research into potential medical uses of the drug. Chelsea responded that Hillary Clinton supports more research, and that she supports the states experimenting with various medical and recreational regulatory regimes for marijuana.

Then she said the following:

But we also have anecdotal evidence now from Colorado, where some of the people who were taking marijuana for those purposes, the coroner believes, after they died, there was drug interactions with other things they were taking.

Marijuana advocates were perplexed by the apparent implication that marijuana could be deadly.

“The former and possible future first daughter of the United States acknowledges that marijuana has medical value, but she also seems to believe that cannabis use can lead to death,” wrote Tom Angell of the pro-legalization group Marijuana Majority in a piece for marijuana.com.

“Chelsea Clinton suggests marijuana is killing people,” blared a headline in High Times.

On its own, marijuana is not known to have …read more

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