MPP, Allies Call on Pres. Obama to Withdraw Nominee for DEA Administrator

Jul 21, 2010 , , , , , , , , ,

Today, a coalition of organizations supportive of medical marijuana patients and providers — including MPP, Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), NORML, California NORML, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), and Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) —  is calling on President Obama to withdraw his nomination of Michele Leonhart to serve as administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The following is a from press release just sent out on behalf of the coalition:

Ms. Leonhart, who is currently the DEA’s acting-administrator, has not demonstrated that she is capable of leading the agency in a thoughtful manner at a time when 14 states have enacted medical marijuana laws and science is increasingly confirming the therapeutic benefits of the substance.

Under Leonhart’s leadership, the DEA has staged medical marijuana raids in apparent disregard of Attorney General Eric Holder’s directive to respect state medical marijuana laws. Most recently, DEA agents flouted a pioneering Mendocino County (CA) ordinance to regulate medical marijuana cultivation by raiding the very first grower to register with the sheriff. Joy Greenfield, 69, 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.” The DEA’s conduct is inconsistent with an October 2009 Department of Justice memo directing officials not to arrest individuals “whose actions are in clear and unambiguous compliance with existing state laws providing for the medical use of marijuana.”

Ms. Leonhart has also demonstrated that she is unable to be objective in carrying out the duties of the administrator as it relates to medical marijuana research. In January 2009, she refused to issue a license to the University of Massachusetts to cultivate marijuana for FDA-approved research, despite a DEA administrative law judge’s ruling that it would be “in the public interest” to issue the license. This single act has blocked privately funded medical marijuana research in this country. The next DEA administrator will likely influence the outcome of a marijuana-rescheduling petition currently before the agency. It is critical that an administrator with an open mind toward science and research is at the helm.

“With Leonhart’s nomination pending, one would expect her to be more — not less — respectful of the Department of Justice and the rights of individuals in medical marijuana states,” said Steve Fox, director of government relations at the Marijuana Policy Project. “Such behavior is an ominous sign for the future of the DEA under her leadership. Moreover, she has continually demonstrated her desire to block privately funded medical marijuana research in this country. The Obama administration has reversed many Bush administration policies over the past 18 months. It is time to transform the culture at the DEA by either withdrawing Leonhart’s nomination or directing her to change her attitude toward medical marijuana.”

43 responses to “MPP, Allies Call on Pres. Obama to Withdraw Nominee for DEA Administrator”

  1. Presidential Chief of Staff, Ralm Emanuel, and Vice-president Joe Bidden may have suggested Michele Leonhart’s nomination. I’ve wonder how this is going to work out?
    It will be interesting, but I am not surprised if President Obama still chooses Leonhart without explaining why? He doesn’t want to get involved with those issues.

  2. Yeah, I hate to say it, but no matter how much thought I put into it, I really don’t think Obama cares enough about us right now.

  3. I can’t believe any of the previous commentators ever thought a viable presidential candidate would ever seriously considering loosening up the federal marijuana laws. There will be no corporate support of any puppet selected for an election in this country. All of you who think differently really have a naive outlook upon politics.

  4. You ought to suggest other candidates who are more acceptable to legalization! Give names! Give him alternatives and a way to save face.

    Get the lawyers ready to sue any government office and any government official who tries to interfere with the election by taking a position against legalization, just like Nevada.

    Drug czars and other bureaucrats need to be stopped from taking a political position on issues, especially this one, and especially if they are against it. Prepare for them to trot out their turkeys, previous drug czars and family research council and their flak groups.

  5. JJ, true democracy doesn’t work, nor have we ever had it in this country. We had a republic, which also did not work. In my opinion, the constitution (no longer used anyway) either failed to stop the rise of corporatism, or it was used as a conduit to facilitate the destruction of the republic form of government. Anarchy (please move beyond the state sponsored scary definition for a moment), makes no promises of protection, but provides for much less need of any protection. It is hard to beat the violence of the state.

  6. we cannot afford to endure leonhart as DEA administrator, much like we cannot afford the existence of the DEA itself.

  7. Obama is a back-door President. Stupid liberals believe this is a “liberal” or “conservative” issue. He is back dooring bills all the time…

    The reform of marijuana laws is a HUMANITARIAN issue. It has nothing to do with political parties. It isn’t a “global” issue. It is an issue that has everything to do with America, not Iraq or Afghanistan. We in America today are more worried about the rest of the world.

  8. Where are the local police that we hire to protect us from smash and grab thieves like the DEA. If I hired a bodyguard and he just stood there while I was being robbed and beaten, I’d fire his worthless ass.

  9. This is why supporting MPP and Normyl and other such local organitions is so important. So is voting..with the help of MPP we know who to vote for, and vote OUT. We are dealing with cancer/radiation poisoning, my caretaker/hubby was hit by a car on our harley & has six ruptured discs…we will be moving from Ohio if they do not pass a compassionate medical marijuana growing plan. I cannot afford it, and we both live in constant pain…but we are members of MPP, we vote, and I webwork. Thank you to those who do the same…maybe, just our lifetime. And JW? On my facebook page, is a link to a raid in Missouri recently; warning, get the kids and animals out of the room when you watch the video..its bad..real bad. Some here say that our government doesnt care, but we elect them, even if its by not voting for those who would help us. Peace, out.

  10. Sorry, just realized cant access me on facebook without my real name, cant put it up for the world…but I know its on youtube too, look for Missouri Police Raid…just, turn down your volume if you are an animal lover.

  11. Can we just get rid of the DEA permanently? I mean who cares about those peoples jobs. Do you think a DEA agent ever thought about the life a drug user he was arresting?

    The DEA is unconstitutional. We should all treat DEA agents as though they are terrorists.

  12. The problem isnt the president, its all you lemmings that keep letting this crap continue. Get out and physically do something today to make a difference. The longer everyone lets this endless war go on the longer the government will take FULL advantage of any of you that Fu*k up.

    Obama is just another puppet…

  13. Joe Biden authored the “Rave Act” ~ Is this a relapse to old ‘Stinkin’ Thinkin’?

    Don’t forget we have come far but there are those whom are stuck on the ideas of ‘control’ and money for their friends and their ‘do nothing’ jobs.

    Simple truth: Prohibition does not work.

    Call on Pres. Obama to remember the thoughts and beliefs of his favorite President, Abraham Lincoln.

    “A prohibition law strikes a blow at
    the very principles upon which our
    government was founded.”
    – Abraham Lincoln

    ” I believe that every individual is naturally entitled to do as he pleases with himself and the fruits of his labor, so far as it in no way interferes with any other men’s rights. ” – Abraham Lincoln After he enacted the first tax on income in the United States.

    “Any people, anywhere, being inclined and having the power, have the right to rise up and shake off the existing government, and form a new one that suits them better. This is a most valuable, a most sacred right, a right which we hope and believe is to liberate the world. Nor is this right confined to cases in which the whole people of an existing government may choose to exercise it. Any portion of such people, that can, may revolutionize, and make their own of so much of the territory as they inhabit. More than this, a majority of any portion of such people may revolutionize, putting down a minority, intermingled with, or near about them, who may oppose their movements.”
    – Abraham Lincoln

  14. Leonhart is currently under investigation over at least a million dollars given to a DEA “informant” who is now serving time for perjury. Leonhart also used oner $100,000 worth of DEA private jet time with no clear reason or permission. Maybe her belief that paying people to lie in court is justified will nix her nomination. Fingers crossed.

  15. Dear A.G. Holder,
    Please do what any boss would do & fire Michell Leonhart for not following the policy you have directed. The actual existence of the DEA should be called into question. They waste tax dollars and terrorize otherwise law abiding citizens of the USA. The War on Drugs is a FAILURE! Thank you.

    Vote YES on Prop 19!

  16. The Oracle said it perfectly…You ought to suggest other candidates who are more acceptable to legalization! Give names! Give him alternatives and a way to save face.

    Get the lawyers ready to sue any government office and any government official who tries to interfere with the election by taking a position against legalization, just like Nevada.

    Start a petition against her appointment and make it easy for us to send our comments to Obama.

  17. I’ll sign it. I already voted for LEAP directive to take Leonhart out of the running. They will eventually submit to our will. They did to bring back alcohol. When? Is the question. I truly thought they would legalize it when us baby boomers grew up and started running for office. So, somebody tell me why is it illegal to grow hemp if it has no THC? I know it’s about those rich textile and chemical corporations and oil companies. And it’s not in their best interest. I just don’t get what makes it illegal. It’s not a plant that has an illegal substance that grows within
    it .That is the understanding I have . Does it?

  18. JJ wrote:
    “true democracy works, communism and socialism does not. Obama lied. IMPEACH”

    Sorry dumbass! Socialism does work! There are many nations in the world with socialism to some extent and most are doing much better than this declining nation. In fact, socialism is much more compatible with democracy than capitalism is. You would realize this if you were capable of thinking for yourself. Also, name one place where democracy has been successfully implemented. And don’t use the U.S. because this is a “plutocracy.”

  19. e need to get Leonhart the HELL out of there and NOW ! This is serious ! She could set this whole movement back to the ’30’s ! So, who do we talk or write to ? Everyone needs to get hot ! I’m off to do some research !!!

  20. Mike, if you were capable of self=thought yourself, you would note that no governmental system has ever worked for the benefit of the people. One of the effects of the internet revolution has been to make the flaws of all the systems we’ve had in place. Throughout history, all forms of government have shown their true colors of tyranny once implemented. And by the way, we didn’t have democracy here, we had a republic. That devolved into corporatism and it’s economic philosophy of crony capitalism. Free market capitalism can work, just not with a government. Anarchy is the only choice for a free person, all other choices make you a slave.

  21. I know that’s it’s frustrating but don’t worry, Democracy works! Look how far we’ve gotten with MPP. Because of “alerts” like the one above and sending emails over the years to our members of congress, you know we’ve made a difference. I feel quite confident that with this coalition of 5 pot origanizations working together and sending the message to the President, that this chick “ain’t gonna make”. Just Watch!

  22. Pabyrds, not only does democracy not work (it really is just two wolves and a sheep voting on what’s for dinner), prohibition works as well. Look at how well it has worked in destroying racial sub-cultures, at how well it has worked in destroying civil liberties with the people’s consent, at how well it has worked in providing slave labor through prison labor contracts, look at how well it has worked to destroy the ideals of individualism, liberty, and justice in favor of being good, law abiding citizens of the state. The people are such good little slaves. They count on the system to correct itself. The slaves act as if the politicians might listen to them. That they must simply be uninformed as to the consequences of their actions. By the way, democracy is nothing but a mob drunk with power. This used to be a republic. Of course, it was a republic founded upon the notion that men with land would rule benevolently. How did that work out?

  23. WHY IS THE DEA EXCLUDED FROM ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STUDIES? Indigenous hemp destruction has widespread negative environmental implications. We are seeing the results. We are dying for it. Evolutoionary precursor food for animals and humans, economic foundation of any country, now gone? where do these people get off… no pun intended < describes essential dietary protocals

  24. Folks … this happened before. Jimmy Carter came in on a decrim wave and put his guy Dr. Peter Bourne in charge … but he forgot to remove Nixon’s SAODAP (Special Action Office for Drug Policy) chief Lee Dogoloff – who became #2 – so when Bourne was fired for prescribing quaaludes to some staffers, up popped Dogoloff (who was Gordon Liddy’s partner for the famed raid on the Hitchcock mansion where Timothy Leary was hanging out) and reversed everything, helped promote the new DEA and kept honest Drug Ed. out of the schools with DARE.

    Exactly the same thing – a holdover who should have been axed was there to step right in – and this was over 25 years ago.

  25. I am growing increasingly impatient with the continued and unabashed propaganda from the Prohibitionists! And to all those Conservatives, which espouse free markets, individuals’ freedoms, state’s rights, small government, and personal responsibility, why do I not hear you crying foul over this issue? Instead, all I hear is Obama is a Socialist and continue the Bush Tax Cuts! This is our chance to come together around a common issue and common goal, and marijuana legalization would be just that!

  26. It is so funny listening to everyone say how she will mess this up for us bla bla bla. Guess what have you ever thought that mabe it is easier for Obama to put her in there and let her have her way then deal with us people lol?

  27. Hai guise i wuld juz liek 2 say im not that bad i smoked sum pot in hischool LOL but i rly like MEN of the Suidae variety LOL they make such cute noises in bed. OIeeeNK! LOL!

  28. Nixon is a crook and so is the DEA. Killing peoples dogs. Taking whatever value they find. Our government is only designed to do one thing and that is to protect property. By protecting property government protects life for if property wasn’t protected then someone would kill you and take your property therefore which is why government protects property and life, not life and property. No where does the dea state that there organization is to protect life or property, even on their website go look….. This is an illegal organization developed by crooks going against the rights of american citizens whom bound to the American constitution as well as cleverly misleading millions of good people and during childhood(D.A.R.E) this organization at the same time committing crimes such as murder, extortion, theft, and black mail not only to bad people but as well as the good people. There day soon awaits judgement

  29. The DEA is the last remaining legacy of a hateful president Nixon.
    He could not trust the FBI, so he established his own federal police force against people he hate most of all, college hippies.
    He also hated the media and Jewish lawyers.

  30. If we had wanted to make the road to marijuana legalization a simpler and more reasonable one, it isn’t this latest stooge, Leonhart, that we should be removing, it was Obama himself, that we should have kept out of the presidency. Obama does as he’s told, and Leonhart was one of the appointments he was told to make. If he does as he’s told, his reelction is that much more assured. The idea that he would reverse his own choice of Leonhart, and, instead, do what a bunch of, what the ignoramuses in this country describe as, “druggies,” want him to do, is hopelessly naieve. I’ve seen, here, that Obama has been called, by some, a Socialist. Thanks for the joke, but no thanks. Obama is, at best, a moderate republican.

  31. Mike B wrote
    “Sorry dumbass! Socialism does work! There are many nations in the world with socialism to some extent and most are doing much better than this declining nation. In fact, socialism is much more compatible with democracy than capitalism is. You would realize this if you were capable of thinking for yourself. Also, name one place where democracy has been successfully implemented. And don’t use the U.S. because this is a “plutocracy.”

    You obviously have no idea of what you speak, I mean literally, no idea, I mean like the complete polar opposite of everything you said. I wonder how people end up with these opinions… Careful not to chastise someone like that in public, you could really embarrass yourself that way. Allow me to explain just how wrong you are.
    Pure capitalism by definition is laissez faires, which means as little government intervention as possible. Socialism by definition is total government. Government makes all the decision and sets all the rules up of the game. For capitalism to work as it should, the market should be “free” as possible. This is because the more you try to control and push the market, the more unstable and volatile the market becomes. So when the government does something like charter Fannie May and Freddie Mac to make home loans to people without the credit and income to afford it, it becomes a sort of cancer to the natural state of the free market, and eventually the bubble pops.

    As far as socialism working better with democracy, how clueless can someone be?!?!?! Lets look at actual socialist countries, USSR, China, Cuba, Venezuela, Vietnam, and insert any other country. How does democracy work there? How bout free press?

    And as far as your brilliant analysis of the US being a plutocracy, name me one country in the history of the world where the wealthy didnt have more influence and power over the poor and lower class? But “You would realize this if you were capable of thinking for yourself.”

    Hopefully your just a 16 year old kid, but if you’re a free thinking adult, that is truly depressing.

  32. Vote Ron Paul For President 2012!
    Legalize Freedom, End the Drug War!
    Restore the Constitution, End the Federal Reserve!

  33. I can’t believe that Obama can’t find someone better than Leonhart. The woman clearly is making bad decisions about drug control. If she was hired by Bush, I’m surprised she made it this long!

  34. We Need Now More Than Ever To See That- We The People Have A voice! The Way It Is Right Now It Seems WE DO NOT HAVE A VOICE! Come on This Country Was Basically Built Because The People felt they did’nt Have A Voice With England Back Before The Revolutionary War! So Where Have Our Ethics Gone? Are We The people THE PEOPLE And Our GOVT. ENGLAND? Well They Say History Repeats It’s Self. I Guess It Does Because It Seems like That Is Where We Are At Right Now!

  35. I just saw President Obama on the show “The View” today. It was a very dry moment of the show. Does he really investigate over the issues or does he just listens to Ralm Emanuel and makes boring PR speeches. It is like hearing, “Allow me to waste time on trying to look and sound good for a while because I’m extremely clueless on real issues”.

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