Will Oregon's Next Attorney General Uphold Its Medical Marijuana Law?

Medical marijuana is a major issue in the race for attorney general of Oregon, which has allowed patients to grow the plant or designate caregivers to grow it for them since an initiative to that effect was passed in 1998. Next week voters will choose the Democratic nominee for the state's top law enforcement position (who looks sure to take the job since there is no Republican candidate), and one contender, former Court of Appeals judge Ellen Rosenblum, is notably friendlier to medical marijuana than her opponent, former federal prosecutor Dwight Holton. Although Rosenblum rather implausibly claims she can't recall whether she voted for the 1998 initiative or a 2010 initiative that would have authorized dispensaries, she says she will "support the will of the people, which is the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act," adding, "We have a lot of pioneering laws in this state. And this is one of them."

By contrast, Holton—who ran the U.S. Attorney's Office in Oregon in 2010 and 2011, during federal raids on medical marijuana growers—has called the law "a train wreck," complaining that it's too easy to be certified as a patient and that cannabis ostensibly grown for medical use ends up on the black market. Holton criticizes Rosenblum for indicating that prosecuting pot cases would be a low priority for her. Rosenblum, meanwhile, faults Holton, who is a fan of mandatory minimum sentences and boasts that he has "overwhelming support" from cops and prosecutors, for "trying to climb the career ladder on the backs of medical marijuana patients." Drug Policy Action, the 501(c)(4) offshoot of the Drug Policy Alliance, is backing Rosenblum "because she supports the rights of Oregonians who are medical marijuana patients to have safe and legal access to their medicine."

The outcome of the election could have national significance in light of the ongoing federal crackdown on medical marijuana, which is not sparing suppliers who comply with state law, contrary to promises by President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder. Obama made two of those promises in Oregon when he was running for president in 2008, saying in one interview that he would stop raids on medical marijuana growers because "our federal agents have better things to do" and in another that "I'm not going to be using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws on this issue." How'd that work out?

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  • SIV||

    OT:

    Travolta then drove him to a bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel, where - in full sight of an overweight black man preparing hamburgers -he repeatedly groped the masseur, the suit claims

    That's a weird fetish.

  • sarcasmic||

    Yes. Double-posting is indeed a weird fetish.

  • SIV||

    OT:

    Travolta then drove him to a bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel, where - in full sight of an overweight black man preparing hamburgers -he repeatedly groped the masseur, the suit claims

    That's a weird fetish.

  • sarcasmic||

    Yes. Double-posting is indeed a weird fetish.

  • T||

    Nice to see donks are so different on drug policy.

    Isn't that one of the 'common areas' we had with liberals back when everyone was yammering about the 'liberaltarian' bullshit? Amazing how that shit died once their guy got elected and kept on doing the same shit.

  • fried wylie||

    shit, man.

  • Mickey Rat||

    I never understood why libertarians bought into the idea that the party who wants to get the government to micromanage health care would simultaneously be for freedom of choice on recreational drug use.

  • Ska||

    "Mr. Blutarsky: zero point zero."

  • BakedPenguin||

    I thought he looked more like Flounder.

  • ChrisO||

    He acts more like Neidermeyer, apparently.

  • o3||

    "that cannabis ostensibly grown for medical use ends up on the black market."
    _
    true dat and its very good!...i mean bad, all bad plus eevil.

  • NeonCat||

    Why aren't liberals using this as evidence for public paid-for health-care? Obviously this cannabis isn't being diverted, it's being used by individuals for medical purposes who are too poor to get a prescription.

  • Johnny Green||

    Go to http://www.NotDwightHolton.Com and http://www.BeatHolton.Com to find out why Dwight is not right for Oregon Attorney General.

  • peeler1967||

    Being a medical marijuana patient myself. I feel that the Feds need to just back off of the sick and dying. Most 85% of the people on the Oregon program with me are really sick and dying. I myself have cancer and would never use this stuff recreationally. but the medicinal properties have saved my life.

  • Johnny Green||

    Take that marijuana opponents! http://www.theweedblog.com/ant.....rosenblum/

  • Malcolm Kyle||

    This is a long overdue wake-up call to Holton and all those other vile prohibitionists who wish to continue with a policy that has proven itself to be a poison in the veins of our once proud free nation

    It is now the duty of every last one of us to insure that the people who are responsible for this shameful situation are not simply left in peace to enjoy the wealth and status that their despicable actions have, until now, afforded them. Former and present Prohibitionists must not be allowed to remain untainted and untouched from the unconscionable acts that they have viciously committed on their fellow citizens. - They have provided us with neither safe communities nor safe streets; we will provide them with neither a safe haven to enjoy their ill-gotten gains nor the liberty to repeat such a similar atrocity!

    If you're a bottom-dwelling, scum-sucking, prohibitionist parasite who's career has entailed subjecting the rest of us to off-the-scale corruption and lawlessness, then maybe you should consider moving to somewhere that won't extradite you to a future national or international drug-war tribunal for your crimes against humanity.

    Prohibition has evolved local gangs into transnational enterprises with intricate power structures that reach into every corner of society, helping them control vast swaths of territory while gifting them with significant social and military resources.

    Those responsible for the shameful policy of prohibition shall not go unpunished!

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