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Jeff Sessions Faces Tough Cannabis Questions—From DOJ Interns

December 7, 2017
(Carolyn Kaster/AP)
ABC News just released a video of Attorney General Jeff Sessions good-naturedly sparring with Justice Department interns, and responding to questions about his outdated views on cannabis. The event took place on June 22, when Sessions spent about half an hour with college students working as interns at the department during the summer.

Brave Justice Department intern puts it to the boss: What’s the deal with you and cannabis?

The full video, which ABC obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, was released on ABCnews.com earlier today.

Mike Levine and Geneva Sands wrote this at ABC News:

During the event, one intern asked Sessions why he supports “pretty harsh policies for marijuana and pretty lax gun control laws” when “statistically guns kill significantly more people than marijuana does.” In response, Sessions noted that more fatal accidents are now caused by drugs than by alcohol, and he said the American Medical Association “is crystal clear” that “marijuana is not a healthy substance.”

But when the intern challenged that assertion, Sessions seemed dismissive, addressing the intern as “Dr. Whatever Your Name Is.”

“I don’t think America’s going to be a better place if marijuana’s sold in every corner grocery store,” Sessions said.

Sessions justified his view on cannabis by pointing to recent statistics about drugged driving. Leafly contributor David Bienenstock recently investigated the truth behind the data on drugged driving, which we suggest the Attorney General consult the next time he’s asked the question.

Related

Taking Drugged Driving Seriously: What Does the Science Say?

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  • A Freedom Fighter

    “I thought the Klu Klux Klan were OK until I found out some of them smoked pot.” – Jeff Sessions

    Sessions statement shows his support for white supremacists, while he ignores scientific data from the Center for Disease Control which clearly points out that cannabis is safer than alcoholic beverages or tobacco products.

    The takeaway from this is that Sessions supports white supremacists and refuses acknowledge the facts when making decisions that affect the entire nation.

    Numbers from the CDC on deaths per year in the USA:

    * Prescription Drugs: 237,485 + 5,000 traffic fatalities
    * Tobacco: 480,000
    * Alcohol: 88,013 + 16,000 traffic fatalities
    * Cocaine: 4,906
    * Heroin: 7,200
    * Aspirin: 466
    * Acetaminophen (Tylenol): 179
    * Marijuana: 0, none, not a single fatal toxic overdose in all medical history and no significant statistical record of traffic problems.

    So, which is safer???? Legalize, regulate, TAX!

  • James crow

    Jeff Sessions (Trumps Little house elf) is to stubborn or to stupid, house elf’s are not to smart, which is why he can not see the writing on the wall right in front of his face.

  • ALAN GANN

    THIS PIECE OF SH*T LIAR DOING IT SO THE RICH BRIBERS CAN GET RICHER ALONG WITH THE CRIMINAL POLITICIANS AS MANY LIKE MYSELF (A DISABLED ONE ARMED VETERAN WITH CRPS/RSD) NEEDLESSLY SUFFER FOR NO OTHER REASONS THAN THEIR GREED AND CORRUPTION!! WE NEED ACCESS TO THE WHOLE PLANT SO WE CAN LIVE WHOLE LIVES!! ALL WE WANT IS TO LIVE AND NOT NEEDLESSLY SUFFER DOING IT!! BUT ALL THESE A*SHOLES KNOW HOW TO DO IS TAKE FROM THE NEEDY TO GIVE TO THE GREEDY!! #ResistTheirGreedAndCorruption #HandsOff #RiseUpAndFight https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f88962e738af58f2721fd310e1b8562699f02b9829414786babc857c278c849d.jpg

  • lovingc

    Jeffy is a liar. Just remember kids this idiot has lied to congress time after time. This is not a good source for anything important.
    The Drug and Alcohol Crash Risk report, produced by the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, found that while drunken driving dramatically increased the risk of getting into an accident, there was no evidence that using marijuana heightened that risk. In fact, after adjusting for age, gender, race and alcohol use, the report found that stoned drivers were no more likely to crash than drivers who were not intoxicated at all.
    It’s worth taking a closer look at that 2015 NHTSA study, because federal officials put a lot of stock in it as “the first large-scale [case control crash risk] study in the United States to include drugs other than alcohol.” Data was collected from more than 3,000 crash-involved drivers and 6,000 control drivers (not involved in crashes) over a 20-month period in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The data was fresh and solid: Research teams responded to crashes 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Drivers were considered THC-positive if they tested for active THC, not for non-impairing metabolites still in their blood days or weeks after consumption.
    While THC-positive drivers were 5% more likely to be involved in a crash, the researchers found that drivers who’d taken an opioid painkiller had a 14% greater risk of crashing. Here’s a chart from that NHTSA study comparing THC (marijuana) with opioids (narcotic analgesics) and other drugs:
    Those levels of increased risk were tiny, however, compared to the risk involved with alcohol. Drivers within the legal range of blood alcohol level as registered by a breathalyzer (BrAC) were found to be 20% to 222% more likely to be involved in a crash. At .08 BrAC, the legal limit, the risk increased to 293%. At 0.15 BrAC, drivers were more than 12 times (+1118%) more likely to be involved in a crash than a sober person. Here’s a chart from that same study, calculating the increased risk of crashing at rising blood alcohol levels:
    By comparison, a driver who has taken penicillin is 25% more likely to be involved in a crash. Drivers carrying two or more passengers are 120% more likely to crash. Drivers using mobile phones to talk or text are 310% more likely to crash.
    A separate NHSTA study (“Marijuana And Actual Driving Performance”) further conceded it’s “difficult to establish a relationship between a person’s THC blood or plasma concentration and performance impairing effects … Drivers with high concentrations showed substantial [impairment], but also no impairment, or even some improvement.” In other words, cannabis affects different drivers in different ways, depending on a number of factors.

  • lovingc

    I have to wonder if Sessions knows any thing real about cannabis. Other than reefer madness propaganda. That he spouts like scripture. Most likely he just wants to hurt as many people that he can while he has the power to do harm to Americans.

  • Boogie

    Sessions is just old and out of touch and needs to retire. Or, this is just another fake news story. Either way, it sucks, He needs to make a definitive statement and get out of the way!