Rep. Mark Souder, Longtime Anti-Marijuana Zealot, Resigns Amid Scandal

May 18, 2010 , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Rep. Mark Souder (R-Indiana), perhaps the most fanatic opponent of sensible marijuana laws in the U.S. Congress, announced that he is resigning this morning amid revelations that he had an affair with a 45-year-old staffer.

Souder, who was preparing to run for his ninth term in office, has spent the last 16 years fighting for cruel and unscientific drug policies, many of which have caused irreparable harm to his country and his constituents. Among the lowlights:

  • In defiance of mountains of evidence saying otherwise, Souder has repeatedly declared that marijuana cannot be a medicine and has vocally supported efforts to stop the advance of medical marijuana laws that protect and provide care for patients.
  • Souder was a primary author and defender of the “Aid Elimination Penalty” provision of the Higher Education Act, which for more than a decade prevented thousands of students with even minor drug convictions from receiving federal financial aid for college. (Luckily, that provision might soon be overturned, despite Souder’s best efforts.)
  • Over the years, Souder’s office has issued numerous press releases spewing long-debunked nonsense about marijuana, such as this one, which claims “smoked marijuana, along with tobacco and alcohol, is the gateway drug for all other drug abuse” and that the Obama administration’s position on state medical marijuana laws will “over the next few years, result in higher crime rates, more highway deaths, and destroyed lives.”

During his reign of ignorance, Souder also had several notable run-ins with MPP staffers.

  • At a 2001 hearing of a U.S. House subcommittee, Souder got into heated debate with MPP executive director Rob Kampia, who was testifying in favor of removing criminal penalties for medical marijuana patients. Souder told Kampia: “You’re an articulate advocate for an evil position.”
  • In a scene from the 2007 Showtime documentary “In Pot We Trust,” MPP director of government relations Aaron Houston asked the congressman if there were any chance he’d ever change his position on medical marijuana. “There isn’t such a thing as medical marijuana, so I would never change my mind,” Souder replied. When Houston pointed out the government’s own Institute of Medicine found otherwise, Souder slammed a door in his face after twice declaring, “There is no such thing as medical marijuana.”

But now, it seems, Souder’s days of opposing compassionate and science-based drug policies are finally at an end. It’s about time, Congressman. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

45 responses to “Rep. Mark Souder, Longtime Anti-Marijuana Zealot, Resigns Amid Scandal”

  1. You won’t be missed. Like the man says, don’t let the door hit you on the way out. As a matter of fact, take all your prohibitionist friends with you.

    Free The Weed. Free The People.

  2. I am so relieved to learn that Mark Souder, who is one of the most hated anti-cannabis crusader during his Senate tenure, is now out of picture. So long, Mr. Souder. Hope you will learn a hard lesson later on as you should support just in case whenever you finally wake up as a regular U.S. citizen. Regardless of your affair with your darling wife, you still have a fellowship with the sinners in your state. You Lose ! Thus prohibitionists are also lose !

  3. YES!!!! After watching in Pot we trust and seeing a houston talking to him and how rtarded souder was i am so happy. souder made me so mad i looked up backgroundinfo on him. Og course he would cheat on his wife with a younger women but demonize people that smoke a harmless plant . f u souder. ur an asshole cheater and a liar and i hope you try weed now that you lost everything. maybe it will make ur depressing shitty indiana life a little better.

  4. This is a victory for everyone. One less prohibittionist in power. Now where does his replecement stand on cannabis reform? Tonight THE WAR ON DRUGS will be on Bill O’Riley

  5. This is a perfect example of total hypocrisy!!!!! Our policy makers use demonizing Cannabis and those who choose a natural enlightenment, to smoke screen their own evil doings. Cannabis doesn’t make you lose your morals, but being in politics sure does! WE WILL NO LONGER LISTEN TO THESE CHEATERS. Oust all crooked, lying,word twisting,non science,wife cheating policy maker and then maybe we tax payers can get a fair shot.
    I am real tired of the liars always winning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. I think it is funny that this “ethical” practicing person, who has opposed sensible acts of personal and medical use of a substance that’s prohibition can be trace back as far as Evangelical belief, is being forced to resign because he had some form of romantic, or sexual, relations with a person, and maybe persons, on his staff.


  7. It would be nicer if he was leaving office due to his personal use of marijuana, since he has fought so hard against it.
    this means 1 more down, but how many to go to get it legalized?

  8. Hi this is mark souder… I go to church. Drugs are bad. But cheating on my wife is ok. Oh and to let everyone know my affair was with a 18 year old call BOY.

  9. I bet Aaron is laughing his ass off right about now, i know i am. Never ceases to amaze me the hypocrisy of these zealots.

  10. Send an email to his office telling him how happy you are to see him go. Let’s have a little vindication when it comes our way! Let us take the low road occasionally!

  11. It’s just a matter of time until all these old prohibitionists just die off. Mark Souder, you’re a liar and a manipulator and you will not be missed. Let the door hit you on the way out you ignorant idiot.

  12. He had to come down. Kudos to whoever exposed this! Well done! Another drug warrior bites the dust. Legalization can speed up momentum all the bit more.

  13. can we get a list of all senators and congressmen that on 1 side says for legalization and the other says against, and of course a 3rd group of undecided

    If you can put that as a link MPP it would be helpful in letting us know who to vote for and who to vote against and NORML should do the same.

    I think it would be cool and if you agree please comment something similar so we can more likely get a response from an MPP rep.

  14. I’ll forgive him as soon as they fix this prohibition thing. Why is it the ones for prohibition seem immoral and unethical? Oh, because when you are used to lying as your job requires you to it spills over into your real life.

  15. I’m a proud Hoosier, and it’s great news that this long-standing smudge on the face of our great state is gone, and will likely be replaced by someone with a greater capacity for rational thought.

    Still though, the only way our movement will ever gain ground is for high-profile (pun absolutely intended) cannabis users to come out of the closet. That’s right, you know who you are. We need our best and brightest to represent us in this cause, and help bust the stereotype that cannabis smokers are apathetic non-achievers. Every time I see a “man on the street” interview with someone advocating marijuana law reform, they’re too busy picking gnats out of their dreadlocks to make an articulate argument for legalization.

  16. He is an idiot! If he lied about an affair, doesn’t that make him untrustworthy? I wonder if he has ever lied about medical marijuana…

    I just watched ABC’s Dateline interview about legalizing marijuana. I recommend everyone watches it. There is a guy named Brian Darling that is a complete CUNT. Probably not an appropriate word, but I cannot think of any other word of disgust that can describe this guy. Unbelievable that we are paying to employ people like this. Not just him but thousands of other politicians and law enforcement personnel.

  17. Rand Paul, the winner of the GOP primary in Kentucky tonight, is a supporter of medical marijuana. Probably not a surprise, since his father is Ron Paul.

    What’s surprising is that his opponents sought to marginalize him by attacking him on his support for medical marijuana. It didn’t work, obviously, as Paul won by a large margin.

    Point being, here’s some clear ammo to use when trying to inform conservatives that they can not only win on this issue, but that even attacks on them over it are not inherently going to cost them an election. That Paul was the Tea Party candidate, which is considered a bastion of the most conservative elements in the GOP, is particularly important, since the issue wasn’t enough even to sink a candidate in the eyes of the more rightwing elements.

    I know his personal popularity, and his connection to Ron Paul, helped him score this victory, but nevertheless it’s a powerful new tool in our belts. This should be a big talking point in the days to come among the marijuana reform movement. Hammer, hammer, hammer this point! Maybe with the right approach, it will be possible to convince some other Tea Party candidates to likewise take a positive or at least agnostic position on medical marijuana, which then becomes yet another tool for our arguments with the rest of the GOP and conservatives — “If the damn far-right candidates aren’t afraid of this issue and can win even when the issue is used against them, what are YOU worried about?”

  18. Mark Souder. I am so happy to see you out of office. You are an enemy to our nation’s Constitution, and I hope your wife takes you for all you’ve got, you piece of shit. Buh-bye.

  19. well well,so if we send a bunch of whores to get all opposing slugs who want to controll others ,and controll the medical use and get

    them out of office. many whores use so lets get it over already buy hook or crook.can you think of a better way?f them the way they f us. get r done

  20. IDIOT in power tries to keep gods plant from being used, and then breaks one of the TEN COMMANDMENTS by cheating on his wife, can you say o i don’t whats the word….possessed by SATAN . Note.. God works in mysterious ways amen. in other news ha ha ha ha happy day happy day 🙂 🙂 🙂 sweet,i’m dancing ,dancing the night away.

  21. Unfortunately this complete s.o.b. spent way too much time in power and there are still many others trying to control their neighbors. Dan Burton (Indiana), James Sensenbrenner (wisconsin), to name just a couple of the detestables. This resignation is good news but highlights the failure of an ignorant Indiana populace. If you would like a real chuckle, read Dan Burton’s statements about drug penalties and then read about little Danny’s criminal record.

  22. I hate religious people that don’t hold themselves accountable and just say that god will forgive u… there is NO god. Ur wife and family and people that voted u in for 8 terms are the ones that need to forgive u. Hey everyone its ok. The invisible man in the sky says its ok he still loves me. Too bad ur wife doesn’t.
    I won’t forgive this guy until he goes and testifies at congress that marijuana should be legalized and that he was lieing the whole time. He should also tell us who was padding his wallet to spew these lies. But that might get him killed.
    He should also do a sit down interview with aaron houston and admit that yes… there IS such a thing as medical marijuana. And he’s gonna need some now that he is out of a job,wife, and family

  23. Holy Smokes. What will the children think? “My God fearing Dad cheated on my Mother? Mark- Before you push your moral views on the citizens in Indiana, please insert head in toilet and flush. Repeat.

    The Rev.sLeezy
    The Universal Life Church of the Holy Smokes
    Potland, OR

    CAMP (Citizen Against Mariuana Prohibition)

  24. dont smoke cannbis because its bad for you? but you can screw your staffer and cheat on your wife and thats ok. this guy is an idiot like most anti cannbis people

  25. get rid of these types of morons. we need to get a new congress. not one or two but all of them need replaced. cant wait for november

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