First Medical Marijuana Raid by DEA under Obama Administration

Will Obama fulfill his promise and end the DEA's war on medical marijuana, or will he let the madness continue? (Disclaimer: This picture is satire - Obama has not joined the DEA or kicked down any dispensary doors - but raids are now happening on his watch.)Will Obama fulfill his promise and end the DEA’s war on medical marijuana, or will he let the madness continue? (Disclaimer: This picture is satire – Obama has not joined the DEA or kicked down any dispensary doors – but raids are now happening on his watch.)Oakland, CA – The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) raided a medical marijuana dispensary today in South Lake Tahoe, California, in the first days of the new Obama Administration. Even though President Barack Obama had made repeated promises during his election campaign to end federal raids in medical marijuana states, many high-ranking Bush Administration officials have yet to leave office.

For example, still at the helm of the DEA is acting Administrator Michele Leonhart, who has been responsible for numerous federal raids in California, following in the footsteps of her predecessor Karen Tandy. Neither Eric Holder, President Obama’s pick for U.S. Attorney General, nor a new DEA Administrator, have taken office yet.

“Whether or not this unconscionable raid on a medical marijuana provider is the fault of federal officials from the previous administration, President Obama has an opportunity to change this harmful and outdated policy,” said Caren Woodson, Director of Government Affairs for Americans for Safe Access (ASA). “We are hopeful that these are the last remnants of the Bush regime and that President Obama will quickly develop a more compassionate policy toward our most vulnerable citizens.”

Medical marijuana and an unknown amount of cash was seized during the raid today from Holistic Solutions, but no arrests were made. This first DEA raid under the new Obama Administration is another example of more than 100 raids on medical marijuana providers that have occurred in California over the past two years. While the greatest federal enforcement has occurred in California, the DEA has been active in other states as well. Federal agents raided the Washington State offices of a medical marijuana advocacy group that was supplying starter plants to hundreds of authorized patients. In Oregon, a federal grand jury was used by the DEA to obtain the medical records of several patients, an effort that was later rejected by a federal court. The DEA also went as far as to threaten New Mexico officials for planning to implement that states medical marijuana distribution program.

“I would not have the Justice Department prosecuting and raiding medical marijuana users,” Senator Obama said in an August 2007 statement. “It’s not a good use of our resources,” he continued. This statement was followed up by Obama in other public events in the run up to the election. “President Obama must rise to the occasion by quickly correcting this problem and by keeping the promise he made to the voters of this country,” said Woodson. ASA has been working with the new Administration on changing federal law around medical marijuana, which has included providing a comprehensive set of policy recommendations.

Further information:

Comments by Obama on ending medical marijuana raids:
http://granitestaters.com/candidates/barack_obama.html

ASA medical marijuana recommendations for incoming president Barack Obama: http://AmericansForSafeAccess.org/PresidentialRecommendations

– Article from Americans for Safe Access on January 22, 2009.

Comments

14 Comments

  1. stonebalone on

    Don’t be such a pussy

  2. Anonymous on

    why are executive order unconstitutional ? sorry, iam not us american.

  3. Kenetic X on

    Let me say first that I was never really a big Obama supporter. I favored Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul. However enlight of President Obama’s recent activity, I must admit the man has demonstrated incredible integrity in making good on his campaign promises !! With the Cannabis issues clearly dominating his Changes.org website, This will be something he will have to address. I have faith in our new President that he will keep his word! President Obama has stated that he does not favor legalization, But admits the War on drugs is a failure and needs to be overhauled. As I’m sure you all know, He has pledged to end the raids and to not use Federal resources to circumvent the state laws. In my opinion, I think this is indicative of a shift to States Rights on the issue of Cannabis. If my presumption is correct, It will not Legalize Cannabis per se, But it will pave the way for new reliable research which I believe will eventually lead to National legalization.

  4. Anonymous on

    Like I always said Ombama been raised enough!, to belive the lies of his upbringing! He just the same as all leaders in the states execpt, he’s got a nice tan, but he still the same BULLSHIT AS BEFORE! Why how chould I say that! His first acts were to sign exeucte orders which buy the way are UNCONSTITUTIONAL! So people because ya never read your constitution and most of all UNDERSTAND!! WHAT YOU READED!! that they are still breaking all the laws of your so-call country? You all deserve what is coming for you all, we have been told of your coming, the crimes you will do to us,and take our lands, but our leaders were also shown you beeing destroyed, and gone too. What is about to happen to your country, is only what you did to other country. In the name of your way of life??, Well they just going to do the same to all of you, LOOK OUT!!.., here it comes??

  5. Philip Cichanowicz on

    How can you say that? He’s done something substantial every day he’s been in office. Maybe he hasn’t touched the prohibition issue, but he’s done tons. Gitmo is closing, the troops are coming home from Iraq, the Bush admin’s records are being made public, and lets be honest: The way Pelosi is talking, he’s going to be investigated.

    If that isn’t progress, I don’t know what is.

  6. greenbox on

    this is an extremly important issue, not just b/c of patients who cannot get their medicine that they really need, but, it would help our economy in so many many ways, if we legalized hemp/cannabis for cultivation for all different types of uses, b/c it really does have a hell of a lot of great uses… the industry would be booming tho, and would do wonders for us as a whole…

  7. Anonymous on

    well we have to give obama time but not to much people lives are in stake in many ways due to the greedy oil company’s we got them to thank for the high gas prices now the high price food too. and our us gov. for allowing our jobs to go to china so they can poison us and our pets. SO OBAMA get your balls a moving lets get the worlds at least the us of a back on track!

  8. Anonymous on

    I’ve gotta think Obama had no knowledge of this raid. It could even be a blessing, (apologies to those raided) because he knows about it now. Ok Mr. President please at least cease the “waste of our resources” I believe you called it during your campaign. Even this can’t be expected overnight but now that you know YOUR DEA needs new orders GIVE THEM PLEASE SIR.

  9. Anonymous on

    I’ve gotta think Obama had no knowledge of this raid. It could even be a blessing, (apologies to those raided) because he knows about it now. Ok Mr. President please at least cease the “waste of our resources” I believe you called it during your campaign. Even this can’t be expected overnight but now that you know YOUR DEA needs new orders GIVE THEM PLEASE SIR.

  10. Anonymous on

    Obama=Ohbummer

    He’s not going to do an f’n thing to change America substantially

  11. Billert on

    I love the hat pic

  12. Witchy on

    While I can indeed appreciate the fact that our new President has important national issues to deal with, I reject the argument that the “cannabis culture” needs to be patient with him. We’re not talking about legalization here; we’re talking about CHRONICALLY ILL PATIENTS losing access to their medication which is already LEGAL in the state where the raid took place.
    All we’re asking is for Obama to follow through on his promise to end federally funded raids on patients in California and the 12 other states who’ve enacted compassionate use laws.

    As a patient myself, I can attest that no other issue FEELS more pressing than my quality of life – as provided by medical cannabis.

    These raids which threaten my very existence would end with a simple stroke of the President’s pen. How much time and energy would that take? The end to federal raids in Medical Marijuana states SHOULD be a priority, as not all of us have the luxury of waiting for the president to do the RIGHT thing.

  13. Philip Cichanowicz on

    As disheartening as these latest events may be, I think the “cannabis culture” has to keep in mind that Obama has a myriad of far more pressing issues that need be addressed before he moves onto social issues like the legality of cannabis. In my opinion he’s done a great job these firs days in office. I’m a staunch Ron Paul supporter, but with that said, I’ve been inspired by the new administration and for the first time in a long time I’m feeling an awesome sense of nationalism. The closing of Gitmo and the push for Bush’s records to be made public (Congress is totally going to investigate the Bush admin btw) are epic steps in improving the image of the US on both a foreign and a domestic level.