Hillary Clinton wants to reclassify marijuana as a less dangerous substance in order to allow more research into the drugâ€™s medicinal properties, the Democratic presidential candidate saidÂ Saturday in South Carolina.Â
Marijuana is currently classified as a Schedule I drug, the most dangerous of five substance categories listed in the Controlled Substances Act. According to the federal classification, Schedule I drugs have â€œno currently accepted medical use.â€ Other Schedule I substances include heroin,Â ecstasy and LSD.Â
Under Clintonâ€™s proposal, marijuana would become a Schedule II substance, which are considered to have â€œless abuse potential.â€ Cocaine, OxyContin,Â Adderall and meth are Schedule II drugs. The move, Clinton said Saturday, would allow federal researchers to explore how to best use marijuana as medicine.
â€œWhat I do want is for us to support research into medical marijuana because a lot more states have passed medical marijuana than have legalized marijuana, so weâ€™ve got two different experiences or even experiments going on right now,â€ Clinton said after being asked about marijuana prohibition during a town hall. â€œAnd the problem with medical marijuana is thereâ€™s a lot of anecdotal evidence about how well it works for certain conditions, but we havenâ€™t done any research. Why? Because itâ€™s considered whatâ€™s called a Schedule I drug and you canâ€™t even do research in it.â€Â
â€œIf weâ€™re going to have a lot of states setting up marijuana dispensaries so that people who have some kind of medical need are getting marijuana, we need know whatâ€™s the quality of it, how much should you take, what should you avoid if youâ€™re taking other medications,â€ she continued.Â
Clinton has saidÂ previously that she does not support legalizing marijuana, but believes in theÂ medical use of cannabis and reforming the criminal justice system to keep low-level drug offenders out of jail.Â
â€œWe have got to stop imprisoning people who use marijuana,â€ she saidÂ last month during the Democratic primary debate.
Clintonâ€™s proposal is similar to policies floated by some medical marijuana advocates. Earlier this year, the American Academy of Pediatrics called on the Drug Enforcement Administration to reclassify cannabis in order to promote medical research. And in July, members of the U.S. House introduced an amendment to the 21st Century Cures Act that would make it easier to conduct marijuana research.Â