Marijuana Policy Project petition: Fire DEA head critical of Obama's pot comments

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Video and more below.
Last week, Denver-based Marijuana Policy Project spokesman Mason Tvert called President Obama's comments suggesting that marijuana may be less harmful than alcohol "refreshing." But his group, a major backer of Colorado's Amendment 64, is considerably less impressed by statements attributed to Drug Enforcement Administration chief Michele Leonhart, who's widely perceived as an obstacle to progressive pot policy -- so much so that the MPP has launched a petition calling for the President to fire her. Details, videos and more below.

As noted by Dan Riffle, the MPP's director of federal policies, Leonhart made headlines in 2012 after an exchange with Colorado Representative Jared Polis. Under questioning from Polis during a Congressional hearing, Leonhart refused to say that heroin was worse than cannabis.

Here's a video of their conversation.

Then, last week, the Boston Herald quoted Bristol County Sheriff Thomas M. Hodgson as saying that during an appearance at a Major Counties Sheriffs' Association meeting, Leonhart was highly critical of comments Obama made about marijuana in a recent interview with the New Yorker.

"She's frustrated for the same reasons we are," Hodgson told the paper. "She said she felt the administration didn't understand the science enough to make those statements. She was particularly frustrated with the fact that, according to her, the White House participated in a softball game with a pro-legalization group. ... But she said her lowest point in 33 years in the DEA was when she learned they'd flown a hemp flag over the Capitol on July 4."

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Polis holding the hemp flag.
Oh yeah: Polis was the driving force behind the hemp flag's Capitol appearance. Hemp, of course, lacks sufficient amounts of the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana to get users high.

The sheriffs responded to Leonhart's comments with a standing ovation, Hodgson told the Herald. But Riffle isn't cheering.

"I think it's normal to expect career drug warriors, folks who've been in the DEA for twenty or thirty years, to be upset about the fact that marijuana is become legal in a number of states," he says. "But at the end of the day, they're employees of the administration. In fact, Leonhart is an appointee of the administration, which has said for a long time that it wants science and the scientific process to inform its decisions. And she's very clearly violating that pledge by refusing to recognize very clear scientific evidence."

Regarding the question of whether marijuana is more harmful to the individual user than alcohol, Riffle points out that even former Rhode Island Congressman Patrick Kennedy, who heads Project SAM, an anti-marijuana-legalization organization launched in Colorado circa January 2013, agreed with Obama's assessment during a recent appearance on CNN.

Here's that clip. Kennedy's statement about the relative risks of marijuana and alcohol come at about the six minute mark, after he's spent a good deal of time arguing that cannabis sales should remain against the law.

In Riffle's opinion, Leonhart's comments to the sheriff's organization undercuts the administration in ways the President cannot allow to stand.

"Can you imagine an employee of a private-sector company publicly and openly criticizing the CEO of the company?" he asks. "They'd be fired immediately. And there's no reason why we should treat a government official any differently."

Hence, the petition calling for her ouster.

Continue for more about the call to fire DEA head Michele Leonhart, including the complete Marijuana Policy Project petition.


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97 comments
edac.2008
edac.2008

Obviously the DEA is making huge money off pot busts so of course they would act as if they are scientists and make bold unscientific unproven claims to everyone they are going beyond their job by making claims that is not the job of the DEA to judge the American vote if Americans vote for legalization it must be done they have no place to say either way that is America the power to vote and stand up for what is really good and bad in this world pot has been talked down upon for years by workers of our government like the DEA when discoveries are left untold and science needs to be considered.

ObamaNazi
ObamaNazi

Obama was a homosexual meth head 'that's in his book, his words'  and Bronco fans are all stoners, so who cares.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

"But she said her lowest point in 33 years in the DEA was when she learned they'd flown a hemp flag over the Capitol on July 4."

This is someone who desperately needs a life. Does she know hemp isn't the reefer she fears?

Kevin O'Brien
Kevin O'Brien

Please fire her and send her back to the 50's where her attitude belongs.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

Let's start by firing the abysmal failure-in-chief.  He can take his entire incompetent team with him.

Alfonzo McCarthy
Alfonzo McCarthy

Yes. She needs to go back to being a Baltimore cop cause it's obvious she has put her foot in her mouth way to many times.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

             *** Persistent Pot Puffing Makes You Stupid ***


http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22927402


Persistent cannabis use was associated with neuropsychological decline broadly across domains of functioning, even after controlling for years of education. Informants also reported noticing more cognitive problems for persistent cannabis users. Impairment was concentrated among adolescent-onset cannabis users, with more persistent use associated with greater decline. Further, cessation of cannabis use did not fully restore neuropsychological functioning among adolescent-onset cannabis users.

Steve Pfefferle
Steve Pfefferle

Yes. She only cares about law enforcement, not the theory behind the law. She wants pot to remain illegal for the same reason the private prisons do.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

For that matter, you'd think the "lowest point" would involve tragic loss of life, or something like that, rather than the textile of which is composed an object of worship fluttering over some building.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident Very good question, Dissident -- one we're going to feature in an upcoming Comment of the Day. Thanks.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... doesn't the tool Jared Polis know that Betsy Ross didn't sew the first U$ flag, nor was it made of hemp?


michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Strongly put. Thanks for the post, Kevin.

theman
theman

@DonkeyHotayYes we should believe the government who has told us that marijuana has no medicinal value when clearly it has, that it causes cancer when the two studies allowed by the DEA and NIDA show otherwise and yet they still tout that its cancer causing OR the "Teen use lowers IQ"flawed ridiculous study that takes nothing else into account.

... and the fact that its not being legalized for teens goes right over the anti crowd's puny little brains.-Its desperation coming from the anti crowd. 

oh looky a new study 


Not only does smoking marijuana not “burn you out,” but it’s downright good for your brain. It actually appears to improve cognitive functioning among middle-aged men, according to a 2011 medical study.

Researchers looked at a large sample of 8,992 men who “used drugs,” mostly cannabis, at age 42 and then again at age 50,The men were tested to measure their level of brain functioning.

Surprise, surprise — the Brits who had used illegal drugs did just as well — or slightly better! — than the chaps who had never “used drugs” at all.

 http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2011/12/21/aje.kwr315.abstract


donkeysabitch
donkeysabitch

@DonkeyHotaywrong wrong wrong fuck tard!! So how can so many studies be conducted in a country that has cannabis listed as a class 1 substance?? Last I checked if a drug is listed as no medical value it cannot be studied. Maybe you should believe and study what is coming from Israel since it is the leader in cannabis studies. Plus recent studies show cannabis protects the brain in mice, Does alcohol??? Nope it does not actually is causes korsakoff syndrome....permanent psychosis get your facts straight ass

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay Yeah, file that along with second hand cigarette smoke causing a cancer epidemic. Bet they only tested pot smokers and didn't have a control group of cigarette smokers.

theman
theman

" She only cares about law enforcement, not the theory behind the law."

 Only until citing science suits her , without of course pointing to any actual science.

 "She's frustrated for the same reasons we are," Hodgson told the paper. "She said she felt the administration didn't understand the science enough to make those statements."


michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Interesting comparison, Steve. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... you'd think that brain-dead bong-sucking stoners wouldn't tell absurd LIES about the textile comprising said object of worship.


But then again, bong-sucking Stoners think they can BULLSHIT and LIE about everything, as their peer group is almost always too pig-ignorant to know truth from fiction, or fact from fantasy.





theman
theman

@DonkeyHotaywho cares . it sure got tha anti crowd's panties in a bunch.

so funny to see your still pissed off about losng the fight to legalize mj for recreation. 

please spout off about how it isnt really legal, thats my favorite whine of yours. love seeing you enraged because the stoners you hate so much are kickin your ass and got  A64 passed despite  all your fruitless efforts LOLOL!!

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @fishingblues and you voted for the worst president in the country's history, you stupid fuck.  So who is the fucking moron?

Romney would have been a whole bunch better than the abysmal failure.  


Still using the infantile "lol" I see.  You are not only stupid and illiterate, you are quite obviously immature as well.  


637847
637847

@fishingblues @DonkeyHotay do you constantly need satisfaction from going off on people online to feel accomplished?  a simple job can do that...

nate505
nate505

@fishingblues@DonkeyHotayNo, he's genetically one total dumb fuck.  Seriously, he takes being a total dumb fuck to unheard of levels.  He's dumb, he's a joke, he's worthless, and frankly, he contributes nothing really positive to society.  I doubt even his remains will function as good fertilizer when that time comes.


theman
theman

@637847@DonkeyHotay

 dont care 

 have fun watching the ass implode on a daily basis.  that heart attack is right around the corner . we'll all know fer sure when the loser stops posting. Sitting on his/her Ass is all the fuckwit can manage 

Ill bet Donk has an office ass the size of Texas, Really she/he ought to put a hat on and cover that thing up!

637847
637847

@DonkeyHotay why are you so enraged?  is it because you watch fox news?  now i understand you..

theman
theman

@fishingblues@DonkeyHotayRomney IS an abysmal failure. Bankrupting cos by loading them up with debt , collecting fees and selling off the assets for more pocket change is a bad way to run a government.

It puts those millions in bad debts upon the tax payers . But I guess if you dont mind everyone else  paying for Romney's mansions he would be a great choice

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @fishingblues Please give an operational definition of your made up term "teatard".  Dumb fuck!

Also, it has been proven that you flunked psychology.  Therefore, it is a good bet you have no clue what "cognitive dissonance" means.  You pathetic little fraud.


Too stupid to live! 

637847
637847

@fishingblues get a new insult... jesus christ and grow the fuck up.  noone cares about what you think of someone, noone cares about how you think the world should work.  you aren't the president for a reason, and thank fucking god.  



637847
637847

@fishingblues you need some serious help buddy.  should I call the suicide hotline for ya?  I mean, with all your anger bottled up and taking out behind your computer screen, your life must be pretty pathetic right now.  Maybe if you weren't so lonely and had a son or someone to talk to you wouldn't be so confused and angered.

637847
637847

@fishingblues Jesus Christ you are so retarded I can't stop laughing.   #MIDLIFECRISIS

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