Congress warming to idea of medical pot for vets

Posted at 4:17 PM, May 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-20 18:17:15-04

Congress is showing an increasing willingness to let VA doctors talk to veterans about medical marijuana in states where it's legal, although final approval is far from certain.

The House approved a measure this week that would let Veterans Affairs Department doctors help veterans sign up for state medical marijuana programs, something the VA now prohibits.

A Senate committee approved a similar measure last month, but the full Senate hasn't voted.

Rep. Mike Coffman, a Republican from pot-friendly Colorado and a former Marine, said Friday he's open to the idea.

Coffman says that if medical marijuana helps veterans deal with post-traumatic stress, it could also reduce the use of prescription drugs and save taxpayers money.

Coffman says the measure wouldn't permit the VA to provide patients with marijuana.