by the Prohibition law. For nothing is more destructive of respect for the
government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be
enforced. - Albert Einstein
Live Internet Town Hall: an interactive discussion on U.S. marijuana policy
TONIGHT @ 5PM PST / 8PM EST
Hosted by Gary Johnson and Marijuana Policy Project’s Rob Kampia
Your participation is welcome.
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Gary Johnson: Pardon Non-Violent Marijuana Offenses
GOP presidential candidate Gary Johnson at the 2011 International Drug Policy Reform Conference
It is rare for a politician to openly advocate the legalization of drugs as the solution to the country’s drug problem. But that’s just what California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson did this week at the four-day International Drug Policy Reform Conference in downtown Los Angeles.
[…] On Thursday, Johnson referred to a Gallup poll saying, “Fifty percent of Americans support legalizing marijuana.. But zero percent of the universe of politicians support this.” His position in stark contrast to other Republican candidates, Johnson said, “They [Republicans] all talk about border violence and adding guns to the equation instead of looking at the root of the problem, which is prohibition.”
According to Intersections South LA, Lt. Gov. Newsom said in his remarks that California is “a state of dreamers, of doers, of entrepreneurs, of innovators” and will “certainly be on the front lines of reconciling the abject failure that has been 40 years, this failed war on drugs.” He argued that the failure of national drug policy is reflected in the tripling of prison populations over the past two decades and the strain that’s caused on government’s budget.
Newsom revealed to the crowd that many politicians believe in legalization but are afraid to voice that position, Intersections South LA reports. “My gosh, if I could just tape-record the private conversations, it would just break your heart,” Newsom said. “We know better, we’re just not doing better.” +
[Republican presidential candidate Gary] Johnson made a bold prediction: that Colorado will be the first state to tax and regulate marijuana. “The notion of legalizing marijuana, I think it’s gonna happen and we’re gonna wake up tomorrow and be surprised,” he stated. “‘It’s just gonna be a domino that falls. I think it’s gonna be Colorado voting to legalize it in 2012. Do that and this country takes a giant step - just gigantic steps - toward a rational drug policy, which looks at drugs first as a health issue rather than a criminal justice issue. This right now is very doable.”
Pictured are NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano, former governor of New Mexico and 2012 presidential candidate Gary Johnson, and NORML founder Keith Stroup at the 2010 Just Say Now! Conference
Republican presidential candidate Gary Johnson is baffled that more politicians don’t support legalizing marijuana, after a new Gallup poll shows that an all-time high of 50 percent of Americans favor legalization.
“Where is the political leadership that should be reflecting that common sense belief?” said the former New Mexico governor in a statement on Tuesday.
“This may be the only issue on the national scene where half the American people support something, but zero percent, statistically speaking, of elected officials and politicians will publicly agree with them,” he added. “Yet, for the most part, there are no politicians who will speak that truth, much less act upon it. With 50% of Americans open to the idea of legalization, why won’t the ruling class at least let us have the conversation?” +
I’ve posted quite a bit about Johnson. He’s a pretty interesting guy.
“We have a drug war along the border that has taken tens of thousands of lives, and the federal government is spending its time and resources declaring war on small businesses whose only ‘crime’ is trying to dispense medical relief in a regulated, taxed, and legal manner. If there is a conflict between state law and federal law, maybe it’s time for the feds to just admit that their law is just wrong, and let the states decide for themselves how they want to handle the issue of medical marijuana.” +
He was never supposed to be the fringe candidate, and his campaign is no lark. Before he officially declared, he visited thirty-eight states—on his own nickel—to get a sense of whether he’d be a viable candidate. He was the first GOP candidate to announce, in early April, and for about twenty seconds seemed like a contender. The wildly popular (still) two-term Republican governor from a state that is two-to-one Democrat. A guy who’s confident that he knows how to manage the purse strings and balance a budget because he did it—eight years in a row—in New Mexico. His fiscal conservatism is unmatched by anyone in the race. And his socially liberal cred—the only pro-gay and pro-choice Republican candidate—is unmatched even by some Democrats. (Of course, while this could be an asset in the general election, it’s a bitch of a liability in the GOP primary.)
[…] Gary Johnson believes in his heart that Americans want the truth. But do they? Legalizing marijuana to significantly reduce the prison population and save the billions spent every year going after pot smokers in the “war on drugs” (a view that more and more Americans share, just not those who vote in Republican primaries) is hardly his main issue; eliminating the deficit is, and was even before the debt crisis this summer. But he’s been marginalized as the pot guy. “I believe at some point the media will move beyond this,” he says, “but I’m not laying on the couch theorizing about it.” Advisers have suggested he cut his speeches before that kicker—legalize pot—while he still has audiences vigorously nodding over his ideas to get rid of the deficit and the IRS. But that would be, well, phony. “I don’t want them to go home and say, ‘I saw this guy Gary Johnson, and he was really interesting.’ ‘Oh, the pot guy?’ ‘He didn’t mention that.’ “ +
In case you missed it:
Aug 13, 2011—Texas Congressman Ron Paul (R) has placed second in The Republican Party’s Iowa Straw Poll, held today in Ames, Iowa. Dr. Paul is one of only two candidates in this year’s field who favors marijuana legalization – former New Mexico Gary Johnson being the other.
Ron Paul finished less than 200 votes behind the poll’s winner, Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann. While the straw poll is non-binding, it is usually an indication of where candidates stand early on in a party’s nomination process. +
Gary Johnson 2012: End the Drug War Now
First it was CNN. Now Fox News has decided to exclude former NM governor Gary Johnson from the next GOP debate in Iowa this week.
Please sign and share this change.org petition: Fox News, Let Gary Johnson Debate!
If you’re not familiar with Gary Johnson, just check out this site’s #Gary Johnson tag. I’ve posted quite a bit about him. You’ll also find coverage of the first GOP debate in May, in which Johnson was a participant.