Contradicting published reports, Mark Dayton now denies telling moms to buy pot off street


Mothers of children with afflictions they believe could be treated by medical marijuana claim Governor Dayton "suggested" to them during a private March 13 meeting that they should just buy pot off the street in lieu of having legal access. (Watch video of one mother detailing what was said at the meeting at the bottom of this post.)

According to a WCCO report, Dayton wasn't contradicting that version of events as recently as Wednesday. "The governor does not deny he told at least one of the parents to buy illegal pot off the street," Pat Kessler reported.

His tune changed during a news conference today, however.

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"The mothers of sick children a couple days ago say that you suggested to them to buy marijuana on the street. Did you do that?" a reporter asked.

"No," the governor replied.

"You did not?" the reporter followed up.

"No," Dayton said.

"What are they talking about?" the reporter said.

"I don't know. I've said all I'm gonna say about medical marijuana... I'm just not going to discuss it further," the governor replied.

Assuming the governor was telling the truth today, then either Kessler's report is false or the mothers are lying about what Dayton said. But during a conference call with reporters earlier this month, Dayton offered up comments about pot that sounded similar to what the mothers claim he said during their meeting. For instance:

We got in touch with Matt Swenson, Dayton's press secretary, in hopes he'd clarify things. But he repeatedly directed us to listen to the audio of today's press conference and wouldn't respond to questions about whether Kessler's report accurately characterized the governor's comments.

If nothing else, today's developments demonstrate that the governor's handling of the medical marijuana issue isn't getting any less bizarre or inconsistent.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at [email protected]