Obama and Romney Can't Ignore Marijuana Anymore

It's kinda hard to pretend pot doesn't exist when almost everyone is talking about it. This week, both Reuters and  Associated Press dropped big stories about the implications of marijuana policy on the presidential election and the whole discussion is making Obama and Romney look a little silly.

Voters in this presidential battleground state won't just decide whether to go red or blue this fall but also green -- as in marijuana.

Whether to legalize marijuana will be on the Colorado ballot in November. President Barack Obama and presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney have identical stances on pot legalization -- they oppose it. And neither is comfortable talking about it.

Yet Obama and Romney find themselves unwittingly ensnared in the legalization debate -- and both may want to take it more seriously if their race in Colorado is close. [FOXNews]

It's really rather remarkable that one of the hottest debates in American politics right now is something neither major party candidate even dares to discuss. As accustomed as we are to having these issues ignored by people in positions of political power, there really is a point at which you just can't ignore it anymore and I think that might be exactly where we're finding ourselves at this very moment.

After all, if the President himself can't explain our marijuana laws to us in a way that makes sense, what does that say about our marijuana laws? A lot of people are seriously pissed off about this, and the longer Obama fails to defend it, the worse he looks. There is no excuse for a leader's failure to discuss public policy with the public. There just isn't.

And now we have a major swing state in which a legalization measure is polarizing the electorate around this exact issue. Obama and Romney will approach that situation how? By standing there like fools and saying nothing at all? By saying it isn't important, even though the voters think it is? Neither look is particularly flattering.

Saying something even slightly sympathetic about fixing our marijuana laws in some way would probably pick up a not-insignificant number of votes for whoever dared to do it. However loud we must make ourselves to get that point across, it is apparently at least a little louder than this, but that's okay because we're getting steadily better at making noise. 

Update: Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson is yet another factor here. Unfortunately, Obama and Romney are so similarly disappointing on this issue that we can't even be sure who will be more affected by Johnson's candidacy. 

Follow Scott Morgan on Twitter: www.twitter.com/drugblogger

(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.)

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

Eventually a major national

Eventually a major national candidate will come out for legalization.  And win big.  Then, suddenly, politicians will be willing to do what their constituents, according to the polls, want to see happen.

How long will that take?  Maybe this will be the year.  But only if the candidates get hammered every time they (or their surrogates) turn up in Colorado.

"And win big."What makes you

"And win big."

What makes you say that? While views are (thankfully) changing on this issue, I doubt we're anywhere close to anyone, especially someone running for NATIONAL office coming out in favor of it. Remember what happened in California? Where were the younger voters or the supporters? The suburban parents will continue to remain reticent. 

Ron Paul, a major party national candidate, DID

"come out for legalization', even promised it would be one of the very first things he would do after the inauguration, if elected.  Everyone ignored him from the media to the party bosses to the general voting public.  So now it looks (if you believe the MSM) as though we are left only with a choice between two prohibitionists with twin policies in all other areas of governance.  Except it IS still possible the delegates to Tampa could nominate Paul over Romney, and let us all fervently hope that does happen, because that would actually give us an actual end to the fed gov's drug war.

Trivializing the Drug War is Not an Option

The two major parties are setting themselves up for the worst PR imaginable on the drug war.  If war business as usual is the strategy of the Rep. and Dem. candidates, then they’ve just stepped off the political edge and there’s no turning back. 

The thing about the drug war is that it’s linked to just about everything Americans don’t like about America: intrusions on privacy, institutionalized racism, culture wars, corporate greed and fraud, government persecution, incitement to war, authoritarianism, and human corruption on a scale unknown since the dark ages. 

It gets worse.

The types of persecution engendered by prohibitions haven’t always resulted in an amendment to repeal an amendment to a constitution.  In the distant past, this type of crap has typically not been course-corrected, and it has crushed empires. 

What’s happening to the United States today as a result of its drug intolerance has yet to experience the metamorphosis that will strip the country of its proto-fascist ethos.

Stay tuned.  Things are about to get more interesting.


Romney & Obama - neither would legalize it

It might be better for this cause if the two candidates did ignore marijuana. Mr. Obama is an insincere person and that's putting it mildly.  He was and is proud of his recreational use of marijuana, but that doesn't mean he wants any of you or us - the regular commoners - to be able to use it without stigma or without having to hide from the law.  As for Mr. Romney his generation and his faith are both against legalizing it he does not have it inside himself to legalize it.  Better luck on a state-by-state level.  Give up for now on these 2 national candidates.

Berry O

"Saying something even slightly sympathetic about fixing our marijuana laws in some way would probably pick up a not-insignificant number of votes for whoever dared to do it."


He did this last election and totally did a 180 on the promises made about marijuana. And people think he really is in support of gay marriage. LOL Hes a liar and crook plan and simple.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <i> <blockquote> <p> <address> <pre> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <br> <b>

More information about formatting options

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, Vaping, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School