Obama on Marijuana Legalization

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  Obama on Marijuana Legalization

Posted by CN Staff on January 23, 2015 at 09:35:57 PT
By Niraj Chokshi 
Source: Washington Post 

Washington, D.C. -- President Obama on Thursday said he expects more states to experiment with marijuana legalization. In a 5 p.m. interview conducted by a handful of YouTube stars, Obama discussed the fragmented policy surrounding the plant, which is legal in Colorado and Washington and regulated differently state by state.“What you’re seeing now is Colorado, Washington through state referenda, they’re experimenting with legal marijuana,” Obama said in response to a question posed by Hank Green, who with his brother runs a YouTube channel with nearly 2.5 million subscribers.
“The position of my administration has been that we still have federal laws that classify marijuana as an illegal substance, but we’re not going to spend a lot of resources trying to turn back decisions that have been made at the state level on this issue,” Obama said, about 11 minutes into the video embedded above. “My suspicion is that you’re gonna see other states start looking at this.”The president went on to discuss a number of issues related to federal application of drug policy. He said that he will continue to have his administration review treatment of nonviolent drug offenders, and said drug policy with regard to marijuana should be treated more as a public health issue than a criminal one. He also voiced concern with the racially unequal application of marijuana laws and noted bipartisan support on the issue.Here is the rest of what he had to say on the issue:What I am doing at the federal level is asking my Department of Justice just to examine generally how we are treating nonviolent drug offenders.Because I think you’re right, what we have done is instead of focusing on treatment, the same way we focused say with tobacco or drunk driving or other problems where we treat it as a public health problem, we’ve treated this exclusively as a criminal problem. And I think that it’s been counterproductive and it’s been devastating in a lot of minority communities. It presents the possibility at least of unequal application of the law and that has to be changed.Now the good news is that we’re starting to get some interest from Republicans as well as Democrats in reforming the criminal justice system. We’ve been able to initiate some changes administratively and last year you had the first time in 40 years where the crime rate and the incarceration rate went down at the same time. I hope we can continue with those trends because they’re just a smarter way of dealing with these issues.Niraj Chokshi reports for GovBeat, The Post's state and local policy blog.Source: Washington Post (DC)Author: Niraj ChokshiPublished: January 22, 2015Copyright: 2015 Washington Post CompanyContact: letters Website: URL:  -- Cannabis Archives 

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Comment #5 posted by The GCW on January 25, 2015 at 21:50:44 PT

In the News 
Obama, "My suspicion is that you're gonna see other states start looking at this."-Indeed, here is a list of states and that list is growing... 7 States That Are Next in Line to Legalize Marijuana
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Comment #4 posted by The GCW on January 25, 2015 at 14:29:24 PT

Bright future.
If that Republican won it would be worse.
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Comment #3 posted by Oleg the Tumor on January 25, 2015 at 12:51:18 PT

The President Is Suspicious? Is He Stoned?
“My suspicion is that you’re gonna see other states start looking at this.”And what does he mean by "this" exactly?That the states are in the process of doing the same thing to the federal government's schedule 1 definition that the original colonists did to King George's tea? It would seem.The man could change this with a pen stroke. Will a lame duck president sit by idly?I just cannot believe that Barack Obama would abandon us like this in the end.It's getting late.
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Comment #2 posted by runruff on January 24, 2015 at 05:47:03 PT

Barbara Bush.
Is heavily invested in the supply side of the prison system and the old cronie Bush Sr. Is making big bank on prison labor which he invented.The irony is, the whole famdamly belong behind bars

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Comment #1 posted by MikeEEEEE on January 23, 2015 at 13:20:26 PT

Makes sense 
"Now the good news is that we’re starting to get some interest from Republicans as well as Democrats in reforming the criminal justice system."Makes sense, more 2 million prisoners, more than any other country on earth. 
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