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Obama Won't Say Why He Opposes Marijuana Legalization

Submitted by smorgan on
The overwhelming popularity of marijuana questions on the president's website has repeatedly forced him to address the issue, yet his answers are utterly lacking in substance. From in December:

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

And at today's event:

"No, I don't think that is a good strategy to grow our economy."

As lame as these responses are, you can bet he'd never have said anything at all if marijuana questions hadn’t repeatedly pulled the most votes on his website. There's a subtle and revealing undertone to all of this insofar as Obama has publicly declined to actually challenge the merits of our argument in any way.

For all of the stereotypical anti-pot talking points at his disposal, Obama chooses to take the softer path of pushing the matter aside as best he can and moving on. Is that because he can't refute our arguments, he doesn't want to, or both? I'm operating under the assumption that 1) Obama privately agrees with us, but remains concerned about the political consequences of associating himself with that viewpoint, and 2) Obama has enough respect for the potency of our movement that he doesn't want to piss us off any more than he has to.

As frustrating as all of this is, we'd be foolish to miss the significance of our success at strong-arming the reform argument into a high profile discussion of the economy. It's not everyday that a sitting president is forced to comment on the legalization of marijuana. The fact that this even happened means we're doing something right.

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