October 8th, 2007
02:23 PM ET
12 years ago

Romney confronted with medical marijuana issue

Watch Romney tackle the medical marijuana issue with a voter in New Hampshire.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was confronted head-on Saturday over the issue of medical marijuana.

Following a campaign appearance in Dover, New Hampshire, a member of the audience, Clayton Holton, told Romney he has muscular dystrophy and said five of his doctors say he is "living proof medical marijuana works."

"I am completely against legalizing it for everyone, but there is medical purposes for it," Holton told Romney.

Romney pointed out that there is synthetic marijuana as well as other pain medications available.

"It makes me sick. I have tried it, and it makes me throw up," Holton said. "My question for you is will you arrest me or my doctors if I get medical marijuana."

"I am not in favor of medical marijuana being legal in the country," Romney said as he moved on to greet other people.

Holton continued, "Excuse me, will you please answer my question?"

"I think I have. I am not in favor of legalizing medical marijuana," the Massachusetts Republican said.

Other Republican presidential hopefuls have also recently been confronted by patients on the issue.

The New York Times reported a patient in New Hampshire accused former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani of saying he would have “federal agents arrest the sick and the dying.”

"I never said that," Giuliani said.

Meanwhile, The Associated Press reported late last month Arizona Sen. John McCain told a patient, "Every town hall meeting I have, someone shows up and advocates for medical marijuana, and, by the way, in all due respect, alleges that we are arresting the dead and the dying, and I still have not seen any evidence of that."

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Filed under: Mitt Romney • New Hampshire
soundoff (274 Responses)
  1. laurinda,ny

    I believe what the New Hampshire man said about Rudy. Rudy has never been an honest man. He falls in love with any woman that looks at him. Even his children are voting for someone else. No wonder they didn't want him in Gracie Mansion anymore.

    October 8, 2007 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  2. LoooseyGoosey

    ..Hillary did not use any illicit drugs in the 60's when such use was common. –By Anonymous

    And its not common now? I often get very upset when my friends do it too.., WITHOUT ME!!

    October 8, 2007 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  3. Sunny Durham, San Diego. CA

    The fact that ignorant people like Romney, Giuliani, etc. are even in the presidential race is scary. Then again, the American public did elect G.W. Bush twice so maybe I shouldn't be so surprised. People for a true candidate among both the Democrats and the Republicans who will take this country in the right direction is Dr. Ron Paul. Please tell your friends and family to check him out: http://www.ronpaul2008.com. I am not a pais operative just an average Joe who sees through the BS of all the rest.

    October 8, 2007 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  4. Evan Borenstein, Atlanta

    Maybe magic underwear can work better than marijuana!

    October 8, 2007 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  5. DJ, Los Angeles, CA

    No Mitt...you did not answer his question.

    His question was would you arrest him or his doctors?

    Mitt just wants to look tough on drugs while ignoring the real medical debate.

    Obviously he seems to be a big-pro pharmaceutical lobby supporter and would rather have people vomit and die of side effects.

    October 8, 2007 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |

    "Weed isn't a drug..it's a plant, it just grows like that..and if you should so happen to set it on fire, there are some effects", "Nobody has EVER OD'd on marijuana, you might THINK they dead..but they aint dead...they'll wake up in half hour ready to eat up your whole house"...but if you take 15 aspirins... that'll be your last headache."

    LEGALIZE MARIJUANA....alcohol and cigarettes are more dangerous than weed.

    October 8, 2007 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  7. Avon, CT

    ROMNEY is heartless. I hope this video gets more publicity in the media to show what an evil and self centered person he is. He could careless about a dying man so think what he would do for you.

    October 8, 2007 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  8. RB, from the bay state

    Watch out for this guy – if this is an indication of his beliefs getting in the way, we're in trouble.

    He was no good here in Massachusetts, and you don't want him running the country.

    October 8, 2007 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  9. Gabriel M. Carbondale, Illinois

    I think the way that Romney kind of ignored the guy as he was still talking talking is a clear view of the superficial nature of politicians. Yes, he's a busy man, but would it kill him to give the guy5 minutes of his time?

    October 8, 2007 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  10. King Everything. Fresno.

    Romneys has no need for marijuanna. If he did smoke it he'd probably start seeing ghostes. i.e. ghostes.
    The only good thing about marijuanna being legal is that it's tax free. The down side is, they will arrest you if you're sick and dying. Those political thugs know it too. I'm sure you all know it most local papers have run storys about local citizens who are sick and cultivate or smoke pot legally. At least here in California.
    State rights are being squashed by a federal Empires terror.
    No doubt.

    October 8, 2007 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  11. USA

    I never seem to understand why the government insists on spending so much money to fight marijuana, all of the telivision specials seem to show how its not bad for people, and how a brash decision back 100 years ago made it illegal. let people whom are allready sick do what they want. its like fighting to eliminate poison ivy. why isnt that illegal, its proven to be more harmful than the other...lol

    October 8, 2007 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  12. Bubba, Swainsboro GA

    Religion is the opiate of the masses, but on some people it's more like PCP.

    October 8, 2007 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  13. Brendose, Oceanside Ca

    WOW...so, so sad....Mitt couldn't even give this guy the time of day. I bet it took that kid every bit of effort to attend that conference and ask that question, and Mitt slapped him in the face and ignored him.

    Mitt is the typical plastic politican, who cares more about big business and interest groups than he does about the general public. He doesn't want to hear our problems!!!!

    October 8, 2007 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  14. AS, L.A. CA

    Wow, it's awesome how many religious bigots post on here and tout their 'progressive' cred. Way to go guys.

    October 8, 2007 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  15. MS, NY

    Medical or Not, Legal or Not people who wants to use it for recreation still manage to get it illegally. So what Romney and others like him are doing is only a political stunt. What about poor patients who need it for leigtimate reasons ? Go to streets and buy illegally ?

    October 8, 2007 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  16. Tammy, Scottsdale, AZ

    No Mr. Romney, you did NOT answer the man's question!

    It amazes me that politicians – who are our legislators – do not support the use of medical marijuana. They do, however, support the production of synthetic drugs produced by multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical companies that are much more dangerous, much more addicting and much more expensive than marijuana.

    Oh wait, I think I just pinned the tail on the donkey! The reason why medical or marijuana in general will never be legalized: money! Why would the politicians – whose pockets are lined by the pharma companies – advocate for the legalization of a "medicine" that they cannot charge $200 bottle for?

    When you vote in the primary and general elections, please consider voting for a candidate who is about non-intrusion of government in our daily lives and allows us to decide what is best for ourselves.

    October 8, 2007 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  17. Scott Mansfield, San Francisco CA

    California passed a medical marijuana law a while back and it is certainly being abused. Just about anyone can get pot by saying they have back pain or anxiety. What's interesting is that there hasn't been a large increase in crime or people crashing cars or whatever the problem with legal dope is supposed to be. We don't understand why pot helps some people medically but it DOES. The downside, even with a poorly written law, doesn't seem to be all that bad.

    October 8, 2007 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  18. Chuck, Harrisburg PA

    Here Mr. Romney, have a synthetic apple, its very good, especially for you.

    October 8, 2007 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  19. MS, NY

    Mitts is an educated elite not in touch with pulse of the majority in this country – the middle class and below.
    John Edwards in on the other end of the spectrum. He is honest and down to earth. It will be big loss to the nation if he does not get a chance as President or a Vice-President to do some good.

    October 8, 2007 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  20. JB Boston MA

    Edwin from Worcester-

    I am willing to bet you have never even looked at a ballot. You vote "D" all the way down, just like everyone else in this broken State. Why is it broken, because there are not two parties. The Democrats run wild with no checks and balances. Governor Romney had to deal with 90% Dems in Congress.

    He did nothing? I'll start, with Health care for everyone. How about that?

    They are already calling Mass the little Vegas becasue Patrick has threatened an increase in State taxes or open 3 casinos. They just increased the Mass Pike tolls again.

    This State is a mess.

    In regards to this story-

    This is not a Dem/Republican issue. Name me one candidate that has gone on record as saying they would legalize marijuana or medical marijuana?

    They won't because they know they will lose votes.

    I'm all for it, trust me. Does less harm than alcohol, and we could destroy the debt in a short time, and balance the budget etc. . . . not to mention the real help it provides to the sick. There are people hiding in Vancouver right now for providing medical marijuana. That is wrong!

    October 8, 2007 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  21. michigan

    Im a firm believer of making things that can kill you if misused.

    i bet we could repay the deficit if you took all the money used to fight marijuana and added it all up.

    October 8, 2007 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  22. Andrew (Miami, Florida)

    It's not about whether he's personally for or against the legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes. It's about respecting the constitution, more specifically, the 10th amendment.

    Republicans, in the past, were about state's rights. If a state wished to legalize medical marijuana within its own borders, the feds should have nothing to do with it. Yet the DEA has raided medical marijuana facilities in California.

    Every Democrat candidate has vowed to end the raids if elected. Only two Republicans have - Ron Paul and Tom Tancredo. Yet the Republicans still call themselves the party of state's rights.

    October 8, 2007 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  23. Glen, Detroit, Michigan

    As a pharmacist, this certainly narrows down the candidate pool for me.

    The American Medical Association stance follows:

    "The AMA believes that effective patient care requires the free and unfettered exchange of information on treatment alternatives and that discussion of these alternatives between physicians and patients should not subject either party to criminal sanctions."

    October 8, 2007 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  24. Kate, Aurora CO

    It is not only Romney. None of the candidates will say they support legalizing medical marijuana. The drug companies have more lobbyists in Washington than any other industry. The drug companies "donate" millions of dollars to political campaigns. Doesn't America get it yet? Our government is no longer for the people by the people it is for Corporate America by Corporate America. That is who is running America Inc.

    October 8, 2007 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  25. Tammy, Scottsdale, AZ

    Hey JB from Boston, MA:

    The ONE candidate who has gone on record to state that he does support the legalization of marijuana: RON PAUL. http://www.ronpaul2008.com.

    October 8, 2007 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
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