When originally asked as a candidate his stand on the issue of medical marijuana, President Obama had pledged not to be “using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws on this issue”.
Today, four US Attorneys from the Obama Administration’s Department of Justice announced plans to “outline actions targeting the sale, distribution and cultivation of marijuana.” Sixteen dispensary owners in California have received letters giving them 45 days to shut down before the federal government shuts them down and seizes their assets
The Obama Administration’s Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has openly declared that the mere act of registering to use medical marijuana in accordance with state law is reason to suspend a citizen’s Second Amendment rights.
Additionally, President Obama has been using the resources of other federal departments to circumvent state laws on medical marijuana.
The Obama Administration’s Internal Revenue Service has ruled that medical marijuana dispensaries cannot deduct common business expenses, a move that cripples the ability of any business to remain viable.
The Obama Administration’s Department of Treasury has pressured banks to no longer hold accounts for medical marijuana businesses that are heavily regulated, taxed, and surveilled by the state of Colorado.
Yet the Obama Administration’s Drug Enforcement Administration has blocked legitimate requests from researchers to study marijuana’s medicinal effect.
The Obama Administration’s Department of Health and Human Services has rejected a Food and Drug Administration approved study of medical marijuana for treatment of post traumatic stress disorder.
President Obama has appointed the heads of all these departments. In fact, he evenappointed to the head of the Drug Enforcement Administration Michele Leonhart, the acting administrator who had been appointed by President Bush.
It is by these measures that President Obama may be judged as more aggressively battling medical marijuana than the previous two administrations in the medical marijuana era. However, there is one critical difference between President Obama’s War on Medical Marijuana compared to President Bush: George W. Bush never bothered to ask us what we thought about it.
President Obama has asked the American People on nine separate occasions for suggestions on public policy. In every instance, the subject of marijuana legalization and medical marijuana support have been the top concerns cited by Americans.
President Bush never openly mocked us on the issue. Of course, if President Bush had bothered to address our medical marijuana questions, it couldn’t have been any more incoherent than President Obama’s recent response.
Full disclosure: I voted for, campaigned, fund-raised, phone-banked, and publicly spokeon behalf of the Obama Campaign in 2008 when I was still a progressive talk radio host on satellite radio. It won’t happen again. Some tell me we’re more likely to see legalization under a Democratic administration; I see two Republicans running for president espousing marijuana regulation. I see arrest graphs showing greater rise in marijuana arrests under Clinton than any president but Nixon. At this point in my childless life, I must take Keith Stroup’s words to heart and “never again vote for any politician who would treat you like a criminal”.
– Article from The NORML Stash Blog.