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You Can Help Encourage Obama to Answer Questions About Our Marijuana Policy

President-elect Obama has created a web page to accept policy questions from the public. Users can vote for their favorites and his transition team has pledged to answer the most popular questions. At this moment, I’m seeing these two in the top ten:

"Will you consider legalizing marijuana so that the government can regulate it, tax it, put age limits on it, and create millions of new jobs and create a billion dollar industry right here in the U.S.?"

"13 states have compassionate use programs for medial Marijuana, yet the federal gov't continues to prosecute sick and dying people. Isn't it time for the federal gov't to step out of the way and let doctors and families decide what is appropriate?"


Showing that we care about these issues is vitally important, so please head over to change.gov and vote for these questions. Registration is easy and the questions should be right there on the front page (where they’ll stay if we make sure to vote for them).

This is a very cool opportunity to show the strength of our movement by making marijuana reform the #1 issue on Obama’s website.  Please help, and forward the link to your friends and family. Votes close at noon tomorrow, so please don’t delay. Thanks!

Update: As noted in comments, I failed utterly to comprehend the fact that 12:00 am is midnight (duh!), so this post actually went up 9 minutes before the deadline (our time stamp is an hour ahead for some reason). So I'm an idiot, but the good news is that marijuana legalization ended up being the #1 question. I doubt I'm going to like the answer we get, but at least we've sent a message that marijuana reform is far from a fringe issue in 2008.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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A little off for timing, but look at the result

Unfortunately the vote ended on 12/12/2008 at 12:00 AM, that means midnight, so the voting is done.

Surprisingly, even without this notice getting out in time, the legalizing marijuana question was the #1 question. Truly it is a major concern for us to stop wasting money prosecuting people for their personal decisions but to instead turn this hobby into a potential economic boost for our nation.

Now let's just hope Obama takes this message seriously and it gets some much needed attention.

12 drug policy questions in the top 40

http://change.gov/page/content/20081211_openforquestions

1. "Will you consider legalizing marijuana so that the government can regulate it, tax it, put age limits on it, and create millions of new jobs and create a billion dollar industry right here in the U.S.?"
7947 – 634 (93% liked question)

7. "13 states have compassionate use programs for medial Marijuana, yet the federal gov't continues to prosecute sick and dying people. Isn't it time for the federal gov't to step out of the way and let doctors and families decide what is appropriate?"
3394 – 272 (93% liked question)

11. "The US "War on Drugs" wastes billions every year tracking down and incarcerating non-violent users. What is your position on the legalization of marijuana? How do you feel about treating rather than imprisoning users of harder, addictive drugs?"
2521 – 102 (96% liked question)

13. "How will you fix the current war on drugs in America? and will there be any chance of decriminalizing marijuana?"
2538 – 238 (85% liked question)

15. "What kind of progress can be expected on the decriminalization and legalization for medicinal purposes of marijuana and will you re-prioritize the "War On Drugs" to reflect the need for drug treatment instead of incarceration?"
2329 – 182 (93% liked question)

18. "The U.S. has the world's highest incarceration rate, largely due to the War on Drugs. Our prisons are festering pits of rape, racism, and gang violence, and divert a lot of tax money to the corrupt prison industry. How can we fix this?"
1834 – 142 (93% liked question)

22. "Would you consider the legalizing of growing hemp (not marijuana) for food, clothing and bio-fuel use?"
1677 – 225 (88% liked question)

23. "Drug control policy in America is a mess, most specifically with regards to marijuana. Federal and state laws are in conflict all over the country. What do you plan to do about this? Will you allow the states to make their own determinations?"
1577 – 143 (92% liked question)

28. "What about the use of Hemp and finally legalizing marijuana for personal use?"
1385 – 265 (84% liked question)

29. "If we did not have over 2 million people in jail, many of which on marijuana charges, we would save billions a year and keep families together. Will you commit to a comprehensive drug treatment plan that will help keep families together?"
1296 – 132 (91% liked question)

33. "What will you do to ensure that the government takes scientific research into account when making laws? Especially when it comes to questions about the legalization of marijuana and the use of medical marijuana."
1198 – 129 (90% liked question)

34. "On the campaign trail, you said you would put an end to the federal raids on medical marijuana patients. Will you implement this policy within the first year of your term?"
1153 – 95 (92% liked question)

Brinna's picture

An analysis of those results

As Mr. Clay so aptly pointed out twelve of the first 40 questions were related to the cannabis legalization and an end to the War on Drugs.

Plus 2 of the top ten, and 6 of the top twenty (that's out of 7,300 questions submitted).

A pretty powerful statement, wouldn't you say?

I just wrote an analysis of those results which I posted on my blog here on StoptheDrugWar, and at Open.Salon.com

It is truly quite amazing to see which other issues these questions trumped.

Drug Policy

President Obama speaks of change and America needs change in many areas. The majority of the people want a change on our current marijuana laws. President Obama can show the people his intelligence and common sense by reforming our unjust drug laws and legalize marijuana, which is long overdue.
The DEA is out of control,oversized,and is trying to police the world. Even trying to extradite Marc Emery, a Canadian to the US. for selling seeds. This stupidity has to stop !!

James Middleton

Marijuana Legalization

Every single State is bankrupt or near bankrupt. WE NEED THE MONEY for school, public services, etc.

It is insanity not to tax the largest cash crop of this country at a time when State checks are starting to bounce. California has already set up a model that works, and currently contributes $100M / year in revenue...a sum as large as Indian Gaming in the state. What's better is that the $100M in revenue reflects only about 8-10% of the actual MMJ commerce that occurs in the state.

Money

If the US stopped being the cop of the world, and ended the war on drugs, we might have money to use for better purposes.

Vote in all areas please

Phillip if you aren't aware there are multiple Marijuana post.

In Criminal Justice it is in 1st place
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/criminal_justice

In other it is 4th place
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/other

In Government Reform it is in 6th place
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/government_reform

In Economy it is 3rd and 4th
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/economy

In Agricultural Policy it is 3rd and 4th
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/agricultural_policy

In health care it is in 5th position
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/health_care

It is second in Environmental conversation it is in 2nd place
http://www.change.org/ideas/browse/environmental_conservation

Question

Does anyone know what is currently going on with Alex White Plume?
It seems that a challenge to Obama over tribal sovereignty and industrial hemp would put Obama in a sticky situation.

Sad, short answer to the bigest question on change.gov

Q: "Will you consider legalizing marijuana so that the government can regulate it, tax it, put age limits on it, and create millions of new jobs and create a billion dollar industry right here in the U.S.?" S. Man, Denton

A: President-elect Obama is not in favor of the legalization of marijuana.

Sad, short indeed...

More of the same. Did anyone really expect anything different? Some may have hoped...

It cannot be any more clear that our government DOES NOT work for WE, THE PEOPLE any longer. The #1 question got pushed to the fourth spot, hidden at the bottom of the page, like a fart stinking up the room. And that answer - notice they don't even TRY to give a reason for such thinking. They know the game is up, the lies are apparent. We know it too.

I try to keep a positive attitude about bringing the WOD's down, but it's clear it is going to take a paradigm shift, a sea-change. Boot these crooks and liars out, once and for all.

Obama's answer

Just because we choose our master, that don't make us free!

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