Candidate in race for State House District 104 on Tuesday, November 8, 2022
"In contrast to her Democratic primary opponent, Frank McCullough, Cunningham is not opposed to the legalization of recreational marijuana. But she hedges that support with some major caveats. Cunningham says she’s concerned about the current lack of a quick, reliable method for police to tell whether motorists are intoxicated by THC (marijuana’s principle psychoactive ingredient) in their blood. She’s also worried about marijuana as an ingredient in candies (as is done in some states where marijuana is already legal) that can lead to them being eaten unknowingly by children. " (Illinois Public media news, 03/14/18)
"Legalization of marijuana is a complex issue and will require a thoughtful approach.
On one hand, the definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing and expect different results. We are not winning the war on drugs as it is being fought now so we need to try some different ideas. Legalization would allow for regulation and we could eliminate the criminal involvement in the sale of marijuana and control what is in it.
The experience of other states should help us in developing regulations if we decide to move forward with legalization. For example, we know that in Colorado, children have been hospitalized after unknowingly consuming THC when it comes in the form of gummy bears or brownies and is left out by parents. Whatever we do, we must protect children and I believe there are steps that can be taken to protect them.
But a huge and more problematic issue is driving while under the influence of marijuana. Respected research journals, including the Journal of the American Medical Association, have studied the effects of marijuana use on driving ability. The overarching consensus that driving while under the influence of marijuana doubles the risk of an accident and that when alcohol and marijuana are used in combination, the risk of an accident is higher than it would be if using either one of the substances alone.
We know that Colorado has seen a significant increase in marijuana related traffic deaths since they legalized it. What we don't know is how to determine if someone is under the influence of marijuana via a roadside test and just what the safe level of THC in a person's blood is in order to drive safely. Before we would legalize marijuana, we need to develop plans and should not proceed until we can protect our state's children and drivers." (The News-Gazette, 10/03/18)