In an interview with Barbara Walters, Pres. Obama said he wouldn't be going after pot smokers in Colorado or Washington because he had "bigger fish to fry." Molly Davies, whose husband Matt Davies is facing 10 years in federal prison for supplying medical marijuana in compliance with California law, doesn't think the father of her children counts as "a bigger fish." She's written an open letter to Pres. Obama arguing as much (Matt Welch noted the letter yesterday in an update to his above-linked post, but I thought it was worth excerpting):
Dear Mr. President:
I am writing to you as a wife and mother of two young daughters, whose 34-year old husband, Matthew Davies,faces 10 years or more in federal prison for providing medical marijuana to sick people in California, even though he complied with state law concerning medicinal cannabis. My questions to you are simple:
- What has my husband done that would justify the federal government forcing my young daughters to grow up without a father?
- How can your Administration ignore the will of the California people and prosecute this good, law-abiding man for doing exactly what state law permits?
Mr. President, my husband is not a criminal and shouldn't be treated like one. Matt is not a drug dealer or trafficker. He's not driving around in a fancy car and living in some plush mansion–trust me. My husband is a regular guy, and we're a regular, middle-class family. Yet even though Matt took great pains to follow state and local law, he is currently facing a severe prison sentence. This all seems so surreal.
Last month you told Barbara Walters that federal law enforcement authorities would not go after people in Colorado and Washington for marijuana-related crimes because it makes no sense for the government to "focus on recreational drug users in a state that has already said that under state law that's legal." You said that the federal government has "bigger fish to fry."
If that's true, why are federal prosecutors in Sacramento threatening my husband, Matt, with 10 years to life in federal prison for providing medical marijuana to California patients who are legally allowed to possess and use it? Matt did nothing illegal under our state and local laws. He has no criminal record. He is a hard-working family man and a loving, kind husband and father.
We are confused and absolutely terrified.
The White House has been pretty good about dodging petitions concerning individual medical marijuana cases, but I doubt it'll be able to dodge this one.