Thursday, July 21, 2011

Recent Action by Obama Administration Bodes Ill for Medical Marijuana

In a July 14 post [link], I pointed out an opinion piece on in which a presidential candidate was advocating legalization of marijuana.  According to a recent National Public Radio report, however, President Obama and his administration are strengthening the federal stance against marijuana, medical or otherwise.

The NPR report identifies three distinct ways the Obama administration has lashed out against marijuana in recent weeks:
  • The White House on July 11 released its National Drug Control Strategy, which argued that marijuana is unsafe and addictive, while its use is at the highest level in the last eight years.
  • The Drug Enforcement Administration in early July concluded a lengthy consideration of whether to reclassify marijuana, and decided against it.  Thus, marijuana remains classified as a Schedule I, the category reserved for drugs with no currently accepted medical use.
  • The third strike against marijuana that the NPR report attributes to the Obama administration is familiar to Arizonans.  The report summarizes the statements by federal prosecutors that large-scale marijuana dispensaries are not immune from federal prosecution.

As Arizoneout readers know, the strong statements by federal prosecutors are what prompted state officials to halt the marijuana dispensary licensing program and file suit in federal court.

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