Corbett Open To Fda Medical Marijuana Legalization

01.09.14 | Bob Price

Sensitive to the characterization that he doesn’t care about sick Pennsylvanians who believe they could benefit from medical marijuana, Gov. Tom Corbett moved to softened his opposition today.

Although Corbett, a former state attorney general, remains opposed to legalizing marijuana for medicinal or recreational use, a spokesman said the governor’s position is based on upholding federal drug laws.

He would, however, be open to direction from the Food and Drug Administration.

“If in fact the FDA does deem there are appropriate and medical uses, that is something that the governor would obviously take into consideration,” said Jay Pagni.

Unlike Colorado and Washington, where recently legalized recreational marijuana use conflicts with federal drug laws, Corbett won’t place Pennsylvania in such a quandary, Pagni said.

“He’d be open to direction and the FDA is the agency for that direction,” he added. “It’s the one body that would determine if [medical marijuana] is appropriate, if it does have a beneficial use, and he would look to the experts on that.”

Corbett’s marijuana course adjustment comes after pledging last year to veto any pot legalization bill that reached his desk.

His spokesman says if the FDA deems that the health benefits of marijuana treatment are appropriate safe and effective, the governor would be interested in seeing what those results would be.