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Blondesjon's avatar

Would you still support Obama if he agressively pursued the legalization of recreational marijuana?

Asked by Blondesjon (32285 points ) September 27th, 2012

Ok, time to separate the folks who think they’re pretty liberal from those who are.

i’m not discounting the outing of a libertarian on two either

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63 Answers

wonderingwhy's avatar

Yep, all for it and have been for a long time. Let’s make sure we legalize growing too; I don’t mind if they want to legislate tax & sale but freedom to grow your own is not to be overlooked. While he’s at it he can also work on legislation to get and keep non-violent personal drug offenders out of prison.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

Yeah. It should be treated like alcohol and cigarettes. In fact, legalize most narcotics, I don’t care.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Hell yeah!
Z

Fly's avatar

Yes. Though I don’t use it, I have long thought that marijuana should be legalized. Though I don’t think that he would pursue it nor could it possibly get through Congress at the moment, more power to him if he decides to do so.

FutureMemory's avatar

Hell yeah.

majorrich's avatar

The Conservative in me would be to Tax the living crap out of it and make government moneys. Then OMVI penalties could be even more moneys!

augustlan's avatar

Absolutely. I don’t use it either, but see no reason why pot should be illegal when alcohol is perfectly legal.

Unfortunately, I doubt very highly that such a measure would pass any time soon.

Coloma's avatar

I don’t follow Obama as it is, but sure, I have thought marijuana should be legalized since about 1973. lol

poisonedantidote's avatar

It is probably one of the few things he could do to win back my approval of his work thus far.

filmfann's avatar

It wouldn’t be a deal breaker, but I wouldn’t be certain I would vote for him.
I would examine the other candidates for someone closer to my beliefs.

Linda_Owl's avatar

Absolutely ! I don’t use it, but I know several people that do & I would like to see it legalized (at least to the extent that alcohol is legal).

elbanditoroso's avatar

Of course. I would support him more.

I haven’t smoked marijuana since my 20s, but I have felt for the last 30 years that it was dumb to have it be illegal.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Prohibition has never worked. It just promotes crime.

SavoirFaire's avatar

It would make me support him more. I’m against the criminalization of drugs in general, and I find the criminalization of marijuana to be particularly absurd.

Mariah's avatar

I support legalization of marijuana so it certainly wouldn’t affect my opinion of him in a bad way.

jerv's avatar

Yes. Given the effects of marijuana compared to alcohol or tobacco, I see no reason to keep it illegal.

tinyfaery's avatar

That might actually make vote for him.

cookieman's avatar

Yes. What @jerv said.

zenvelo's avatar

Yes, I’d support him even more. I haven’t smoked weed or drank alcohol since 1986.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

Yes. I don’t use it because it makes me absolutely useless, but it should’ve been legalized and taxed long ago. It would bring in a lot of tax revenue at a time of major deficits and save hundreds of millions, possibly billions in policing, presecuting and jailing good people who are otherwise productive, but now excluded from good paying jobs because they have criminal records. And, I suspect, a lot of people would suddenly show up in the job market because they would no longer fear getting tested. So, we would have even more taxpayers generating even more revenue and greater productivity at less expense. But dis is awe too dippicote foe ow ewected wepwesentatibs to gwasp, ebidentwy.

woodcutter's avatar

He’s only the president, not a king . How aggressive can any one president get for any cause? He would need support from congress to get any traction. It would be a false promise.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@woodcutter There’s no mention of a promise in the OP. Only aggressive pursuit. Presidents pursue policies all the time. The only promise that’s implied is a promise to sign any legislation that decriminalizes or legalizes marijuana that crosses his desk (assuming it doesn’t also make puppy rape mandatory or something).

Pandora's avatar

Yes, then I would go out and buy all the assholes I know some weed if they haven’t started smoking. LOL

wundayatta's avatar

What? Marijuana? Are you crazy?

If he supported marijuana, I’d have no choice but to support Romn….........

Uh. Nevermind.

Just kidding.

I’m still in favor of four more years.

woodcutter's avatar

@SavoirFaire It still would be an election campaign gimmick and a pretty cheesy one at that. Because a candidate proclaims to try “everything within their power” to legalize pot, it will make a lot of gullible people jump in, and those that don’t want it legalized to have a reason to get out the vote. It would be bullshit to those that know it will be next to impossible to even get a bill to his desk to sign.
Sort of like “W” saying he would sign an assault weapon ban if congress landed it on his desk. Do you really think anyone was worried that would ever happen?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@SavoirFaire But again, the OP doesn’t say anything about this being a campaign promise. Instead, the question is whether we’d (still—placed in parentheses because not all of us support him now) support Obama if he aggressively pursued (not just promised to aggressively pursue) the legalization of recreational marijuana. And at this stage of the game, supporting people who even just give lip service to the idea is better than nothing because it gets us closer to the point when an actual bill could get passed. If people who say they support it can get elected, that makes it easier for people who actually support it to get elected. Gimmick or not, then, it’s still worth putting into the calculus when deciding for whom to vote.

Blackberry's avatar

Im really confused, why would I not?

woodcutter's avatar

I think this question would be more interesting if Romney was to say he would do more to make pot legal. A liberal running for office saying he wants to legalize it pretty much goes without saying. Same people are going to vote for him no matter what.

Coloma's avatar

It really is absurd when compared to the carnage of alcohol related issues in this country.
I prefer marijuana to alcohol any day of the week. Alcohol is, by far, the greater of the two ‘evils” if you will, as long as one is not going up in smoke daily. I can’t believe this issue is still so volatile after 50+ years of marijuana being a mainstream recreational substance.

rojo's avatar

Without reading any of the above: Damn right I would.

Roby's avatar

I will not support Oboma in any capacity..

We can survive a Barack Obama, who is, after all, merely a fool. It is less likely to survive a multitude of fools, such as those who made him their president.”

jerv's avatar

@Roby Yes, but would you go so far as to support the criminalization of breathing if Obama endorsed it? It seems that your answer had nothing to do with the question that was written and was solely a partisan slam.

Or how about just answering the question in the context of marijuana legalization. Hell, if it helps get a relevant answer, substitute Romney’s name in there instead!

rooeytoo's avatar

It is ridiculous that booze is legal but marijuana is not. Actually I think all should be allowed to kill themselves with the poison of their choice. Just do it in your own home and not on the same road I am driving on (to the grammar police – I know don’t end a sentence in a preposition but I feel like it).

jazmina88's avatar

I think that was on his agenda last time. However, pharmaceutical companies probably helped change his stance, unfortunately. Then the medical dispensaries got raided. I vote legalize it!

woodcutter's avatar

Is this Q about whether we want it legalized, or if it would make it a deal clincher if someone running for prez supports legalizing it?

syz's avatar

Sure.

I’m not a fan of marijuana, or recreational drug use in general, but the hypocrisy of alcohol being legal while pot is not is clear to me. The failure of the “war on drugs” is also clear to me.

The only reason your premise would cause me to hesitate would be my questioning his priorities if pot legalization was of more importance to him than the myriad of other, more vital issues.

ucme's avatar

I don’t support him, coz he’s from eeh-merry ka & i’m not.

tedd's avatar

I would support him slightly more than I do now, as I believe in legalizing it.

KNOWITALL's avatar

It may sway my decision somewhat towards him because it’s a smart thing to do, and I haven’t seen many good decisions from him frankly. Romnyy’s a tight-ass lol

tedd's avatar

@KNOWITALL Quit fantasizing about Romney’s ass. :)

KNOWITALL's avatar

I just threw up a little, Tedd, geez…he’s so creepy.

tom_g's avatar

I wasn’t aware that there were many people who were still against the legalization of marijuana? Is this supposed to be a controversial issue or something? I thought this was one of those things that legislators were dragging their feet on, and were just way behind popular opinion. I could be wrong. And probably am. I’m going to dig for some recent polling data.

Edit: Ok, I am wrong. Maybe. How depressing. I just found this. At least from this poll back in 2011, 51% still felt that marijuana should not be legal (CBS News Poll). But wait, the Gallup poll looks more promising.

Anyway, to answer the question, I would support Obama more if he legalized marijuana.

josie's avatar

No.
I have no problem with legalizing drugs. The problem is that in our time and place, people who fuck up their lives with drugs will become one more dependent constituency. This would probably make political sense to a progressive politician.

But as soon as we make people “free” to use substances, we make others “slaves” to pay for the inevitable social damage that can result. If people want to be free to use marijuana (or alcohol, or anything for that matter), I say they should be.
But if it turns out that they cannot control their relationship to that substance, it should not be anybody’s problem but theirs. And I do not believe the current president sees things that way.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Alcohol can make people violent. Weed makes people happy and sleepy.
It would make far more sense to illegalize alcohol.

rooeytoo's avatar

@josie – that is indeed the condundrum. Here we have so many government subsidized addicts who die young and then we say the government is failing them and throw more money at them. You are right, people have the right to choose, but I get sick of supporting them while they slowly kill themselves.

woodcutter's avatar

One question. How much more can anyone support any candidate they already like that has any value other than voting for them? Vote for them twice? Nope can’t do that. Put X’s and O’s next to their name with that #2 pencil? Telekinesis and nag champa?

jerv's avatar

@rooeytoo That argument could also be made for many food items. Do you like sweets? Obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay; it would be in the public interest to outlaw candy, soda, many baked goods, and quite a long list of other things. How about meat? Look at the health problems caused by a purely carnivorous diet (like the Atkin’s diet) and it’s obvious that we cannot be trusted with meat either.

I could go on, but you get the gist of what I am saying, so it boils down to this; how far do we let the government go in protecting people from their own stupidity? And what qualifies as stupid enough to exempt you from any sort of assistance? Since both lack of personal responsibility and bad genes can both lead to diabetes, would you rather pay for those who get diabetes through bad lifestyle choices, or would you rather have those that developed it naturally despite their best efforts cast to the wolves? It’s either/or; doing it case-by-case isn’t cost effective or entirely accurate.

And if you see pot as different as it’s use is a strictly voluntary action, so are steak, bacon, eggs, bacon, candy, or bacon. Many people don’t use those either, so to be fair, they should be criminalized too.

Mariah's avatar

@woodcutter I think people just mean they would be more enthusiastic about Obama. Or, if you want to talk action-based, perhaps they would take part in campaigning and fund-raising.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@woodcutter Support can be relative. A friend of mine is planning to vote for Jill Stein, but she has donated money to both Stein and President Obama. She supports them both—in that she prefers Obama to Romney, even if she prefers Stein to Obama—but she supports Stein the most. If the president wants both her money and her vote, he may have to be more vocal about the issues most important to her.

dabbler's avatar

“People who fuck up their lives with drugs will become one more dependent constituency”
We spend far far more on incarceration of marijuana ‘criminals’ than we possibly could spend on what ever expense they could cause the government (we the people) due to marijuana use. And being in prison is substantially more likely to make someone dependent on government assistance down the road than a recreational drug habit.

It costs far more than average annual income for minimum security incarceration. So the economy has lost the productivity of that citizen and in addition it costs more than that to lock ‘em up.

Paradox25's avatar

I think that most people who don’t support liberal politicians in general (including Obama) already have a fundamental opposition to legalizing or decriminalizing Cannabis, and probably for the reasons that Josie mentioned. Drug legalization is not one of my major reasons by itself to support a candidate, but if it came down to two similar candidates then yes I would choose the pro-pot candidate over the ant-pot candidate. I would eliminate voting for any type of political candidate, regardless of how much I agreed with on other issues, if their stance against Cannabis was extreme however. Actually, two ‘Republicans’, Gary Johnson and Ron Paul, have a much better NORML rating than Obama.

Coloma's avatar

‘Well, the issue aside, I don’t think anyone is qualified to bitch about the president, any president. We can have our opinions, but If you think you can do a better job then get your ass up on the podium and do it.
I don’t want the damn job, do you?

josie's avatar

@Coloma

I would love the job.
Get up everyday with a list of decisions to make. Be an active participant in events rather than be a hapless spectator to events.
However, too much bullshit to get there.

rojo's avatar

@Coloma Yeah, I’d give it a go even if it would age me by a decade over 4 years.

dabbler's avatar

“However, too much bullshit to get there.” BUZZER **disqualified**. That is part of the job.

woodcutter's avatar

To aggressively pursue… What exactly is that, while keeping within the confines of the legal process? Is it something that no one has tried before? or thought about?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@woodcutter I take it to be a matter of using the bully pulpit more than normal, putting extra effort into the rallying of fellow party members in Congress, and maybe even an old-fashioned whistle stop tour. It’s nothing that hasn’t been done before in pursuit of other top priority agenda items.

woodcutter's avatar

POT…not a top priortity

dabbler's avatar

“POT…not a top priortity” Sure, but de-criminalization should be.
It costs all of us a huge amount of $$ to imprison people on mere possession convictions.

The prison-industrial complex would like you to believe that pot-smokers are dangerous and should be locked up. But that is merely good business for them.

GracieT's avatar

I’m already an Obama supporter. I’m even working on his campaign, so I can’t really support him any more. But yes, it would simply give me another reason to support him. Although, given that Romney still has NOT told us what he’d do, just which policies of Obama’s he wouldn’t stop, I really don’t need another reason.

Coloma's avatar

@josie and @rojo

You guys are masochists. lol

woodcutter's avatar

When a president finds himself with “political capital” they can only spent it once so they really would be looking to spend it wisely for maximum effect for his agenda. I would be very surprised if any sitting prez would blow his hard fought political capital on legalizing dope. It would be a gamble at best and he would have to know who his friends were in both houses before sticking his neck out and risk losing the kitty. Imagine his legacy. The “dope” president. Those who imbibe believe that most people are open to this, and those who do not, believe that most people are straight and appreciate sobriety. If the prez gambles and loses then there goes that ol political capital forever and he won’t get much of anything done for people because he shot his wad for hopeful drug users at the same time throwing away future opportunities for accomplishing better things that would have benefited more people. Not worth it, even with everything that is known about intelligent uses of cannabis

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