Obama: Decriminalization, Rescheduling Progress Possible

President Barack Obama said in a recent interview that Congress may be forced to take political action on marijuana in the near future, if further reforms are passed at the state level.

“We actually may be able to make some progress on the decriminalization side,” Obama told Vice News. (In the video interview, marijuana comes up at 14:23.) “At a certain point, if enough states end up decriminalizing, then Congress may then reschedule marijuana.”

Marijuana is currently listed as a Schedule I narcotic by the Drug Enforcement Administration, along with substances such as heroin and LSD that have no accepted medicinal use. A bill introduced in the U.S. Senate recently would move marijuana to Schedule II, where it would still be tightly regulated but deemed to have medicinal value under federal law.

The president seemed to indicate that he was open to further reforms, but that he wasn’t going to make rescheduling a priority, even though some cannabis activists say he has the power to take unilateral action if he wants to.

“The position of my administration has been that we still have federal laws that classify marijuana as an illegal substance,” Obama said during a YouTube forum in January. “But we’re not going to spend a lot of resources trying to turn back decisions that have been made at the state level on this issue.”

Tom Angell, chairman of the Marijuana Majority, commented in a statement that Obama “can reschedule marijuana without any further Congressional action needed. He should do that.”

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5 comments on “Obama: Decriminalization, Rescheduling Progress Possible
  1. Melissa Gardner on

    When the stamp act was created in the 1930’s it created criminals by even worse criminals. If our founding fathers were here today they would be angry as they grew marijuana and tobacco and all the ropes and sail cloth used in The Revolutionary War was made from hemp. The paper that the United States of America is written on is hemp. Women used hemp and ergo in childbirth even in biblical times. But to set stumbling blocks against the brethren and sisters is a crime against God who made marijuana. Yes it is medicinal and the war on drugs has never worked. My dad who passed and a former PhD Economist for the federal government who not once used Marijuana stated mant times to put it out there in buckets and use the money and taxes to help our brethren and sisters.

  2. John A Verkitus on

    President Obama needs to STEP UP and Reschedule Marijuana. This waiting to do it is hurting millions of people, and costing tax payers millions!
    After all, like the president said, weed is not as bad as beer or alcohol!

    So, what is the problem ??

    Sign the Paper and lets get it over with already !! He already said its gonna happen sooner or later anyway! WHY MUST WE WAIT ?

    Johnny V..

  3. steve on

    Obviously, Obama is waiting because he’s afraid that his “status among some of his supporters” will be hurt or compromised. He knows that somebody different will be coming along to replace him, not too long from now, so he has decided to “pass the buck” onto the newcomer & avoid hurting his “status”. It does not make any sense whatsover, being that well over half, likely more than 70% of all americans thinks that he should take care of it, once & for all, & if he did, it would definitely “raise his status” among the common americans, but he doesn’t really care about the thinking from most of us common americans, he cares about the thinking of the few richy rich not so common americans,, most of which have a lot of money, but no sense or cents, whatsoever! Yes, he should put his status aside, sign the paper, remove it from any kind of rating whatsoever, except for it being just like any common crop, regulated like peppers, tomatoes, any of the herbs people consume, after all, that is all it is, an herb. A God, or mother nature given, valuable in so many ways, plant, simple as that. American politicians are so far behind the times it is unreal! Wake up dummies! Almost all of us want you to just face the facts, stop lying about it being harmful in any way, & give us all back our own God given rights, to either consume a pepper, some oregano, or yes, even some marijauna! Very simple, sign it, seal it, deliver it out of the total class of stupidity, that you have it in!! Just pitiful how ignorant some are about all that!

  4. Jeff Johnson on

    Legalize it. Good for the country many levels…creates jobs, creates better schools, cuts down on the amount of drunks that kill people driving.


    We the people of America all want the best for our country and our people, and there is one person who can make all this happen, our almighty President Obama, a man who has this golden opportunity just sitting on his lap, and procrastinating over it for one reason or another, when I truly believe that if he signs this MMJ Legalization Bill he will go down in history, for being the one and only President of the United States of America who had the balls to do it, and personally I feel that he will because he is the man!

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