Thursday, February 9, 2012

Obama's problem with MMJ

Posted By on Thu, Feb 9, 2012 at 4:21 PM

President_Official_Portrait_HiRes.jpeg
  • White House

President Barack Obama's position as the most anti-medical-marijuana president that ever done held the office is well-documented by activist groups.

And here, AlterNet does some documenting, recapping all the fun times MMJ states like California, Montana and Colorado have had with federal officials.

There were the California memos, and our own memos from U.S. Attorney John Walsh, who only has the children in mind (this time). Then there's MMJ centers being unable to claim business deductions with the IRS, or bank with anybody, and then patients not being able to get a firearms license, and on and on until you're fairly sure the federal government hates your involvement with marijuana, whatever it is.

So there's all that, which seems to create credible evidence proving there's no way in hell that President Obama is not driving this machine.

Still others argue that the recent attacks have little to do with President Obama at all. Instead, they believe the efforts of the DEA, DOJ, and other federal agencies are being coordinated primarily by drug war hawks within the administration, many of which are holdovers from the George W. Bush regime, such as DEA administrator Michele Leonhart. Adding weight to this claim are recent statements from US Attorney Andre Birotte, who acknowledged that the DOJ’s recent activities were led by the federal prosecutors themselves and were not instigated by either President Obama or Attorney General Eric Holder — both of which are engaged in their own personal battles for political survival and, as a result, are unlikely to expend even a shred of political capital to halt the efforts of the administration’s more ardent drug warriors.

The theory's new to me, and would certainly explain the Republican-like zeal with which these officials are going after the relatively benign substance. And, of course, Leonhart drew fire as soon as she was nominated, as this one change.org petition shows.

But if you're hungry for more talk, just hang around for campaign season. Undoubtedly, Obama will trot out some kind of base-pandering rhetoric about medicine to sick people. And who knows? If he's elected for his final four years, he may even give it to them.

You just never know, though, and that's the problem.

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