Two proposed constitutional amendments that would legalize medical marijuana are being debated in Ohio, The Columbus Dispatch reports.
Supporters of each amendment are trying to gather 385,245 signatures of registered voters needed to qualify for the ballot, by the July 6 deadline. Neither group is having much success so far, the article notes.
This week, Kevin Sabet, who served in the Obama Administration as the Senior Advisor to Director Gil Kerlikowske at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy from 2009 to 2011, spoke at the Ohio Statehouse against the amendments. He said while medical marijuana isn’t a bad idea, it is wrong to use “smoked marijuana under the pretense of medicine,” the newspaper reports. Sabet said existing drugs and others in the testing phase contain the key chemical components of marijuana in pill form.
He added advocates of medical marijuana are “putting on white coats and pretending to have compassion for the sick and dying.” He said that in states where medical marijuana is legal, only 5 percent of those receiving it have severe medical problems. Sabet added medical marijuana is most often prescribed for headaches and stress.