New Jersey’s Republican Governor Chris Christie is not what you would call an ally of the marijuana reform movement. He slow rolled the implementation of the state’s medical marijuana law. He pushed to make it far more restrictive than necessary. He even conditionally vetoed a bill to help serious ill children get access to medical marijuana because he wanted the legislature to add tougher regulations. Despite all this, Christie’s official position on this issue is still better than President Obama’s.
This week Christie finally signed into law a modified version of that bill to allow seriously ill children to have access medical marijuana. By signing this bill Christie legally acknowledges that marijuana has at least some legitimate medical uses and said he “believes that parents, and not government regulators, are best suited to decide how to care for their children.”
This modest acknowledgement alone is enough to make Christie clearly better than Obama on this issue, which just shows how radically out of line with the American public Obama’s official position on medical marijuana truly is.
Under the Controlled Substance Act the Obama administration has the power to reschedule drugs without going to Congress. The administration could easily move it from Schedule I to Schedule II or III, which would make the medical use of cannabis legal under federal law. Despite several governors petitioning Obama to reschedule marijuana, his administration has actually gone to court to fight against making this change. The Obama White House insists marijuana officially remain classified as having “no accepted medical use in treatment” under federal law.
Obama’s position on medical marijuana is embarrassingly out of touch with both the will of the electorate and the scientific evidence.
Photo by Goodiez under Creative Commons license