Read Jared Polis's invitation to President Barack Obama to tour a dispensary and pot grow

Jared Polis.
Earlier this week, we posted about President Barack Obama's latest marijuana comments: He told the New Yorker that pot isn't more dangerous than alcohol, and considers it to be less risky "in terms of its impact on the individual consumer."

Cannabis reform advocate Mason Tvert was heartened by Obama's take. So, too, is Representative Jared Polis, who has written a letter to the President and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid inviting them to tour a Colorado dispensary and grow.

Polis isn't a newcomer to this issue. He's spent years arguing that Colorado should be allowed to enact its own marijuana laws, even if they contradict federal law.

This past August, the Obama administration took steps in this direction, announcing that it wouldn't sue to stop Amendment 64, the voter-approved measure that allows adults 21 and above in Colorado to use and possess small amounts of marijuana. But he's remained cautious in his personal remarks about pot. In the New Yorker interview, he called it "a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life."

Photo by Eric Gruneisen
President Barack Obama during a 2012 campaign appearance in Boulder.
Nonetheless, Obama's statements in regard to alcohol and marijuana broke new ground, and he was explicit about what he sees as the inequities of punishment when it comes to pot.

"Middle-class kids don't get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do," he said. "And African-American kids and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties." As such, he went on, "we should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing."

Obama also referenced Colorado and Washington, the two states that have legalized recreational pot sales. In his view, their efforts should be allowed "because it's important for society not to have a situation in which a large portion of people have at one time or another broken the law and only a select few get punished."

These remarks clearly prompted Polis's letter to Obama and Reid. We've reproduced the text from the entire document below, but Polis begins by thanking the two men "for your recent comments regarding your shifting positions on the regulation and legalization of marijuana. It is vital that our nation's leaders recognize that marijuana's placement on Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act has cost taxpayers millions of dollars and has classified countless people as criminals simply for using or being in possession of a substance that, as you noted, Mr. President, is less dangerous than alcohol 'in terms of its individual impact on consumers.'"

With that in mind, Polis extends "an invitation to both of you to visit Colorado and join me to visit a legal dispensary and grow operation to see how the law is being implemented in the state. I am confident that when you see Colorado's work to implement the law while protecting children and raising revenue for our schools firsthand, we can begin to make similar efforts on a federal level."

What are the chances of Obama and Reid taking up Polis on this offer? Mighty slim, in all likelihood. But if Colorado's marijuana experiment inspires other states to follow suit, such a visit at some point in the future is no longer beyond the realm of possibility.

Continue to read Jared Polis's letter to President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

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Sterling Meeks
Sterling Meeks

Oh, n/m. A Faux Noise fanboi. I suppose rudimentary poli-sci courses are too "librul" for your liking, huh?

Rob Jennings
Rob Jennings

No one cares if he does or doesn't. The man is a hypocrite on the issue. Says one thing and does another.

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Polis is the LYING IMBECILE who stated before congress the laughably false idiocy that the first U$ flag was made of hemp.

Jared Polis = ZERO Credibility.


Yea, i'm sure a warehouse full of plants and a deli/head shop style storefront with a bunch of white kids will really impress the President.

You know what would impress me, and the President? Showing him an outside farm, where commercial plants should to be grown, with minorities previously in jail for marijuana owning and working that farm. But that will never happen in Colorado.

Showing Mr. President more white guys getting away with something minorities have their life ruined over wont really hit the mark when it comes to the Presidents comments. But hey, we're so proud of the commercialization of weed, we don't pay attention to details, we just want to show off, like a typical white guy.


@DonkeyHotay You're an idiot with zero credibility... and so is Jared Polis. Get bent, scumbag!

GuestWho topcommenter

@Monkey    Unfortunately I don't think most politicans will ever be able to understand the point you are trying to make.  Politicians usually want to enact more laws thinking that will solve the incarceration problem and most seem to love regulations, government programs, and tax dollars.  Others seem to "believe" that everyone in jail deserves to be in jail or don't want to appear soft on crime so they support strict regulations like the marijuana laws in Colorado.  If politicians really wanted to address the problem they would remove the unnecessary laws that exist instead of giving support to laws with strict arbitrary limits that continue the status quo of jailing people for victimless crimes....but there's little to no money to be made by the government, prisons, dispensaries, hydro stores, etc regarding marijuana if they remove the strict regulations.

It is an interesting offer from polis, however, and I'm curious to see if he will get a response...


Are there any dispensaries in Colorado that are owned and operated by African Americans?



Kenyans with fake Hawaiian birth certificates?

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Monkey  "we just want to show off, like a typical white guy."

Like a privileged Boulder white guy who grabbed a $500,000,000+ windfall of Bluemountainarts Dot Com outside investor $$ just before the bubble burst in 2000.

$500,000,000.00 of hype, smoke and mirrors for a dot com company that had NO REVENUE, NO PROFIT, ... money that came from the savings and pension funds of average hard working Americans.

DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@GuestWho ... would or should a U$ President tour the Mustang Ranch in Nevada to see what "legal prostitution" looks like?

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