Senate Committee to Question DEA Head Nominee Michele Leonhart Tomorrow

After serving two years as interim DEA administrator, where she oversaw continued raids on medical marijuana providers and personally rejected an application for FDA-level research on marijuana, Michele Leonhart is scheduled for a confirmation hearing tomorrow before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

While her nomination has been widely opposed by drug policy reform groups – including MPP – it appears all but certain that Leonhart will be confirmed by the Senate.

President Bush first nominated Leonhart for this position in 2007. The Obama administration re-nominated her in February, even though she has overseen actions that contradict Obama administration directives and made comments that clearly counter reality. The most egregious:

  • Despite last year’s Justice Department directive to respect state medical marijuana laws, the DEA under Leonhart’s leadership has repeatedly raided medical marijuana patients and providers who operate under state law. In July, for example, the DEA blatantly ignored a Mendocino County (CA) ordinance to regulate medical marijuana cultivation by raiding the very first grower to register with the sheriff. Joy Greenfield, 68, had paid more than $1,000 for a permit to cultivate 99 plants in a collective garden that had been inspected and approved by the local sheriff. Informed that Ms. Greenfield had the support of the sheriff, the DEA agent in charge responded by saying, “I don’t care what the sheriff says.”
  • In January 2009, Leonhart rejected an application from University of Massachusetts professor Lyle Craker to conduct FDA-level research on marijuana in the hopes of getting it rescheduled. In doing so, she opposed recommendations from both a DEA administrative law judge and the American Medical Association.
  • Last year Leonhart heralded increased drug violence in Mexico – which has claimed about 30,000 lives in four years – as a sign of success: “Our view is that the violence we have been seeing is a signpost of the success our very courageous Mexican counterparts are having,” she said. “The cartels are acting out like caged animals, because they are caged animals.”

Sources say Leonhart’s confirmation is virtually guaranteed, so our best hope is to make sure senators on the Judiciary Committee ask her tough questions. If your senator sits on the Judiciary Committee, you can urge them to press Leonhart on her plans for the future by clicking here.

15 thoughts on “Senate Committee to Question DEA Head Nominee Michele Leonhart Tomorrow”

  1. If she heralded the violence in Mexico so happily as a success then, I submit that she should go to Northern Mexico to preach her thoughts & beliefs there in a very large open public forum. If she cannot face the people of Mexico and the cartels, say the same directly in front of them eye to eye, then she is just a _______!

  2. Will she be asked if she has ever smoked marijuana? If she says ‘yes,’ will she be denied the job? My son was fired from his job because he smoked marijuana (never on the job). Why is President Obama held to a lower standard for his job?

  3. Democrat, Republican, it doesn’t matter! Until we start electing public officials that adhere to the PEOPLE instead of the CORPORATOCRACY, we will remain a jobless, oil-consuming, prison populating NATION!

  4. And time goes on we all know that there are liars at every turn, all waiting to rape the weak and feed on their flesh.

  5. “Sources say Leonhart’s confirmation is virtually guaranteed..”

    United States will be a total Hell Hole if she again becomes the head administrator of the DEA.
    She will set forth the final solution by arresting those who are involved with cannabis and to close down all state run clinics that supplies it.
    And it gets worse…..
    She will be the scourge of the Obama administration.
    She was and she will be the most hateful women in United States History.

  6. And upon her forehead was a name written, mystery, Babylon the great, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth.

  7. This is all going too far. Busting pot smokers is just a smokescreen. The real thing they are looking to do is collect all your guns. So Be Vigilant! Today, Obama put the head of the Food and Drug Admin from Monsanto, same person that makes Anthrax and Biological warfare, vaccines etc. So is our food going to be poisoned now. Enough already, I am a flight attendant and I will not ever get groped again. What happens if the cable and internet was just shut off? We couldn’t get information to people. The means does not justify the end.

  8. This is why we have recently hired new cops: 1. Of course she is a member of the trilateral commission. She is going to work hard going door to door to every pot smoker, everyone whoever downloaded any song from any server bit torrent site and they are tracking people. Download Peer Block Free and you can see if you are getting tracked or not. If you don’t smoke, then you’ve been downloading, smokescreen to take you and your guns. This is the way the Feds will collect our guns. Wake up and smell deception. Research it.

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