Congressman Cohen Addresses Anti-Doping Efforts at Helsinki Commission Hearing as Tokyo Olympics Begin

July 21, 2021
Press Release
Questions why marijuana is among banned substances

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09), recently named the Co-Chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), also known as the Helsinki Commission, today presided at a hearing on “The First Clean Olympics? Rodchenkov Act Enforcement at Toyko.” The Commission heard from expert witnesses on the effort to hold those accountable for the unfair advantage provided by performance-enhancing drugs as the Olympic Games begin in Tokyo.

In questioning witnesses, Co-Chairman Cohen asked about the case of sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson, recently banned from the U.S. Olympic Track and Field team in Tokyo after testing positive for marijuana. Co-Chairman Cohen urged those involved to change the international sports rules regarding marijuana use, which is not illegal in many U.S. states, since he said it is not a performance-enhancing drug.

Congressman Cohen asked about tools available to law enforcement to prosecute those, like athletic sponsors, who benefit from performance-enhancing doping.

See Co-Chairman Cohen’s entire line of questioning here.

Witnesses at today’s Commission hearing were:

  • Edwin Moses, Emeritus Chair, U.S. Anti-Doping Agency; Three-Time Olympian, Olympic Gold Medalist;
  • Richard Baum, U.S. Coordinator, Doping in Sport, White House Office of National Drug Control Policy;
  • Jim Walden, Partner, Walden, Macht, & Haran, Attorney for Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov and Former Assistant U.S. Attorney, Eastern District of New York;
  • Debra LaPrevotte, Senior Investigator, the Sentry and Former Supervisory Special Agent, Federal Bureau of Investigation; and
  • Noah Hoffman, Two-Time Olympian and Competitor at Sochi 2014.

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