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Presidential Politics: Both Major Party Tickets Include Former Drug Users

Democratic Party presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama has famously confessed to teenage drug use in his published memoirs. Now, with Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain having announced his selection of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential ticket-mate, both major parties have confessed former drug users on the ticket.

Palin has smoked pot, she told the Anchorage Daily News in a 2006 interview. Here are the relevant paragraphs:

Palin doesn't support legalizing marijuana, worrying about the message it would send to her four kids. But when it comes to cracking down on drugs, she says methamphetamines are the greater threat and should have a higher priority.

Palin said she has smoked marijuana -- remember, it was legal under state law, she said, even if illegal under US law -- but says she didn't like it and doesn't smoke it now.

"I can't claim a Bill Clinton and say that I never inhaled."

Reports of Palin's comments excited an immediate reaction from the Marijuana Policy Project, whose executive director, Rob Kampia, called on Republicans to respect states' rights when it comes to marijuana policy. "That she used marijuana is no big deal, but what is a big deal is that she thinks that the 100 million Americans who have used marijuana, including herself, belong in jail. That wouldn't be good for her kids," he said.

"Perhaps most importantly, Alaska is one of 12 states that allow the medical use of marijuana, and one in five Americans currently live in those states. The heavy hand of the federal government has trampled state authority and tried to interfere with the implementation of these state-level medical marijuana laws. The GOP ticket should embrace the time-honored Republican principle of local control by promising to end the federal government's war on sensible medical marijuana laws in both red and blue states," Kampia continued.

Although confessed former drug users are now on both major party tickets, drug policy and drug reform are nowhere to be seen so far in either party's platform or the nominee's campaign events. If you want to discuss drug policy reform in the 2008 presidential election, you have to talk to the Greens, Nader, or the Libertarians.

(This article was published by'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.)

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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message to kids


What kind of message does public saturation of alcohol marketing have on kids? Anti-marijuana legalizers have no problem with the message that alcohol saturation marketing has on their kids. But a plant called marijuana? Well now that is a different story[ propaganda] you see. The hypocrisy concerning the government and marijuana has become hilarious. The sooner they realize that they are the joke, then the sooner they will begin to get a grip on themselves.

fear is the message to the kids

what the pukes of law and order who are actually big on an easy pension on the backs of both the tax payers and the verry legitmate users, such as myself, of cannabis want is Fear. you interfer with us and you better know fear to talk to your congressperson, your local politicians, your neighbors... by yourself you better live in the darkness and feel fear rather than speak out about how the nazi based nixonian prohibition is falling apart a piece at a time.

kick your $15 to NORML and start contacting your congressfearpersons who have been betraying you for their own gain of sucking up fear votes.

let's stop making their ugly self serving fear plan work today.

i am in iowa and this is my home state, it is a hick outfit and the politicians are big on fear fear fear. they make me sick to my stomach they are such cowards.

start helping out Carl Olsen as he files massively powerful federal actions to force the dea pukes to reschedule cannabis. oh, and it is cannabis, not marijuana.

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