While the evidence that marijuana works as a treatment for opioid abuse is inconclusive, several studies have found an association between medical marijuana laws and reductions in opiod prescriptions, opioid-related deaths, and fatally injured drivers testing positive for opiods. These results make sense to the extent that marijuana can be substituted for narcotics as a way of relieving physical or emotional pain, a switch than can be expected to reduce serious side effects because marijuana is safer.
Although Sessions claims he is open to refutation by science, he clearly has not bothered to look at the research. Such incuriosity is consistent with the former Alabama senator’s history as a diehard drug warrior who knows lots of things that aren’t so. Consider his outrage a few years ago when President Obama publicly conceded that marijuana is less dangerous than alcohol.