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President Wrong on Marijuana

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

(Mr. SMITH of Texas asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)

Mr. SMITH of Texas. Mr. Speaker, recently, President Obama said that marijuana is no more dangerous than alcohol; however, the White House's own Web site gives numerous examples to the contrary:

First, marijuana use, particularly chronic use that begins at a young age, can lead to negative health consequences, such as dependence, addiction, respiratory illnesses, and cognitive impairment;

Second, marijuana is not a benign drug, and it is the second-leading substance for which people receive drug treatment;

Third, in the past 20 years, marijuana potency has tripled, leading to serious public health concerns;

Fourth, long-term use, particularly in adolescents, may be linked with lower IQ later in life.

Mr. Speaker, comparing marijuana to alcohol, as the President did, will only encourage its use and endanger the health of many Americans.

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