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Congressman: Eliminate the War on Drugs

Colorado congressman Jared Polis wants to drastically reduce the federal government's funding of the war on drugs. He has introduced amendments to the Full Year Continuing Appropriations Act of 2011 that, if passed, would virtually eliminate money spent to fight drug crimes. The first amendment, No. 501, proposes to eradicate funding of the drug czar. The second amendment, No. 427, would prohibit the investigation and criminal prosecution for the possession, manufacture or distribution of marijuana. Polis believes that the drug czar's office is not only unnecessary, but has proven to be more harmful than helpful in the case of marijuana.
Publication/Source: 
Gather (MA)
URL: 
http://politics.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474979065488

Washington State Drug Reformer Roger Goodman to Run for US Congress

Washington state Rep. Roger Goodman (D) has announced that he is seeking the Democratic Party nomination to challenge US Rep. Dave Reichert (R), a two-term congressman who represents Washington's 8th congressional district. Although he doesn't emphasize it heavily on his campaign web pages, Goodman is a champion of drug policy reform.

http://stopthedrugwar.org/files/rogergoodman.jpg
Roger Goodman
His reform record is long and impressive. An attorney, Goodman served as the executive director of the Washington State Sentencing Guidelines Commission in the late 1990s and was elected to the National Association of Sentencing Commissions. While with the state commission, he published major reports on prison capacity and sentencing policy, helped to increase availability of drug treatment in prisons, and shepherded 14 other sentencing-related bills through the legislature.

Goodman followed up the sentencing stint by leading the King County Bar Association's Drug Policy Project, which coordinated a groundbreaking initiative to take a critical look at drug laws and promote cheaper, more effective, and more humane drug policies. In doing so, he helped create an impressive coalition of over 20 professional and civic organizations that has spurred the legislature to reduce imprisonment of drug offenders and shift funding into drug treatment.

A state representative since 2006, Goodman is cosponsor of a marijuana legalization bill currently before the legislature, and is supporting a pending medical marijuana dispensary bill. Last session, he helped push through a 911 Good Samaritan drug overdose prevention bill, and is seeking similar legislation to help prevent alcohol overdoses. He continues to work for sentencing reform in the legislature as well.

While Goodman is aiming at the 8th congressional district, that could change because of redistricting. He told the Chronicle he could end up in one of three different districts, but said he was confident he could win in any of them.

(This article was published by StoptheDrugWar.org's lobbying arm, the Drug Reform Coordination Network, which also shares the cost of maintaining this web site. DRCNet Foundation takes no positions on candidates for public office, in compliance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and does not pay for reporting that could be interpreted or misinterpreted as doing so.)

Kirkland, WA
United States

Legalize Dagga and Other Drugs: South African Medical Journal

Location: 
South Africa
South Africans are still mulling over comments by the editor of the South African Medical Journal, who has called for government to look at legalizing certain drugs, such as dagga (marijuana) and cocaine. Editor JP van Niekerk says the high number of drug offenses that the country sees is proof that the country's prohibitionist war on drugs is ineffective, and authorities therefore should look at legalizing and regulating certain drugs.
Publication/Source: 
East Coast Radio (South Africa)
URL: 
http://www.ecr.co.za/kagiso/content/en/east-coast-radio/east-coast-radio-mobile-news?oid=1077703&sn=Mobile+news+detail&pid=171901

Bill Aims to Legalize Marijuana, Make Washington Pioneer State

Location: 
WA
United States
Sponsors of a marijuana legalization bill predict Washington will lead the nation in getting rid of the prohibition on marijuana. If bill sponsors get their way, Washington residents will be able to go to the state liquor store and legally buy marijuana. The same laws against selling to minors and driving while impaired would apply.
Publication/Source: 
KOMO (WA)
URL: 
http://www.komonews.com/news/local/115604624.html

Arizona Probation Officer Fired for Supporting Marijuana Legalization

Location: 
AZ
United States
Less than two months after signing a letter calling for the legalization, taxation, and regulation of marijuana, Joe Miller was terminated from his job as a deputy probation officer in Arizona. Miller is just one of a series of law enforcement officials to be fired for their views on drug policy.
Publication/Source: 
The Huffington Post (CA)
URL: 
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/08/arizona-officer-fired-legalizing-marijuana_n_819929.html

Ex-South Carolina Treasurer Thomas Ravenel Says Legalize Drugs; Prohibition Is a Destructive, Costly and Futile Strategy

Location: 
SC
United States
Former South Carolina Treasurer Thomas Ravenel is breaking his silence and taking on America's drug prohibition war, saying he advocates a repeal of the prohibition on drugs and calling the government's response a failure. "Drug abuse is a medical, health care and spiritual problem, not a problem to be solved within a criminal justice model," he said. Prohibition is "our government's most destructive policy since slavery," he added.
Publication/Source: 
The State (SC)
URL: 
http://www.thestate.com/2011/02/08/1684798/thomas-ravenel-legalize-drugs.html

Arizona Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Introduced by GOP State Rep John Fillmore

Location: 
AZ
United States
Under a bill introduced by Representative John Fillmore possession of two ounces or less of marijuana -- by anyone -- would become a petty offense and carry a fine of only $100. Fillmore says that marijuana isn't a gateway drug, as critics unscientifically claim, and all the money and time wasted by law enforcement on marijuana prohibition enforcement would be better spent elsewhere.
Publication/Source: 
Phoenix New Times (AZ)
URL: 
http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/valleyfever/2011/02/marijuana_decriminalization_bi.php

The Deadly Failure of Drug Policy in the Americas (Opinion)

Location: 
Jeffrey Haire believes that our prohibitionist drug policy has failed and opines that removing the profit from drug trafficking organizations will effectively destroy them. He says the "Law enforcement–Industrial complex" is already up and running and could handle any enforcement issues related to minors using adult substances or people operating vehicles or acting out in public. We have the expertise and the economic savvy to remove the profit from the drug traffickers and produce substances that are safe for recreational use. The key though, is to produce substances cheaply enough, and tax them reasonably so that their price still falls below what a black market producer could afford to market.
Publication/Source: 
Colombia Reports (Colombia)
URL: 
http://colombiareports.com/opinion/157-guests/14009-the-deadly-failure-of-drug-policy-in-the-americas.html

Massachusetts State Legislator Files Marijuana Legislation

Location: 
MA
United States
Ellen Story, D-Amherst, responding to the 69 percent of the voters in her district who instructed her to vote "in favor of legislation that would allow the state to regulate and tax marijuana like alcohol" on Nov. 2, 2010, is sponsoring "An Act to Regulate and Tax the Cannabis Industry." Assigned House Docket Number 01091, it will receive a bill number in the near future. If enacted, the state’s current prohibition upon adults having or growing a personal supply will be repealed, analogous to alcohol-control laws for home winemaking.
Publication/Source: 
Marblehead Reporter (MA)
URL: 
http://www.wickedlocal.com/marblehead/news/x286169782/State-legislator-files-marijuana-legislation

State Senator: Should Indiana Legalize Marijuana?

Location: 
IN
United States
A state senator is asking a question she hopes will spur debate over sentencing laws and possibly save Indiana millions of dollars: Should the state legalize marijuana? Sen. Karen Tallian, D- Portage, is sponsoring a bill that would direct the criminal law and sentencing study committee to examine Indiana's marijuana laws next summer and come up with recommendations. Senate Corrections Committee Chairman Brent Steele, R-Bedford, said he would give Tallian's proposal a legislative hearing.
Publication/Source: 
The Republic (IN)
URL: 
http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/604978fe95284f7e9051ea1963c14085/IN-XGR-Legalizing-Marijuana/

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