Holder Says No More Federal Medical Marijuana Raids

Friday, February 27th, 2009

Good for Obama.

Attorney General Eric Holder announced this week that Obama will keep his campaign promise to end the DEA raids on clinics in states that have legalized medical marijuana.

It’ll be interesting to see if this tiny bit of federalism will hold should some states or cities decriminalize or even legalize marijuana entirely.

But this is great news.

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35 Responses to “Holder Says No More Federal Medical Marijuana Raids”

  1. #1 |  MG | 

    Finally, Obama is keeping a campaign promise.

  2. #2 |  Chris K. | 

    Keep in mind this is the same speech where he promised a new AWB. So lets not go sucking each others dicks just yet gentlemen.

  3. #3 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Holy crap! I had to sit down.

  4. #4 |  Chris in AL | 

    lol Chris k

    It sounds like you celebrate things a lot differently then I do, buddy.

  5. #5 |  thomasblair | 

    It’s nice to see that policy has reversed direction, but it stops WAY short of the necessary action – legalize it (and don’t tax it).

    Take it to the base, man. Don’t stop at the tip!

  6. #6 |  Marty | 

    I’m waiting for the punch line.

  7. #7 |  Cynical in CA | 

    Not holding my breath.

    Will they return the property of clinics raided by the Feds after those states legalized pot dispensaries?

    That’s a rhetorical question.

    Anybody who thinks it will anything other than business as usual can make me an offer on that bridge over the East River.

  8. #8 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    Chris K: “So lets not go sucking each others dicks just yet gentlemen”

    Sheeeit, if its gonna be that kinda party I’m gonna stick my dick in the mashed potatos…

    Anybody get that reference? Anybody?

    Seriously, this is good news. Anytime somebody pokes the most extreme drug warriors in the eye, it is good news. Baby steps, perhaps, but if you’ve been paying attention to recent news (particularly from Mexico) and recent polls in which over 40% of respondents support marijuana legalization, I’d say that people are beginning to wake up. As Curtis Mayfield said, “keep on pushing…till you reach that higher goal” (no pun intended).

  9. #9 |  MassHole | 

    Sample used on Ill Communication by the Beastie Boys.

    Any idea of the orig source?

  10. #10 |  ParatrooperJJ | 

    It is doubtful that an order to the DEA not to enforce federal law would be legal.

  11. #11 |  Brock | 

    Are you sure a couple of beltway lawyer’s wishes and dreams are going to stop a “Dime Bag” Joe Arpaio-type agent from investigating/raiding and referring for prosecution?

    Even one who knew the police chiefs would make sure he got elected sheriff someplace while he’s settling his retribution and obstruction of justice lawsuits?

  12. #12 |  Brock | 

    Darn possessives will get you every time.

  13. #13 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    #9 MassHole:
    You called it. Well done and +1 for you.

    I want to say it came from a movie, but I can’t remember which one. All I know is that is is LOL hilarious, and I chuckle everytime I think about it. For the record, I have never engaged in that activity with mashed potatos OR apple pie.

  14. #14 |  Danny | 

    Chris in AL,

    lol Chris k

    It sounds like you celebrate things a lot differently then I do, buddy.

    I was about to guess that it was a “Chris” thing.

  15. #15 |  nobahdi | 

    The source of the “mashed potatoes” line is comedian Mantan Moreland from his album That Ain’t My Finger.

  16. #16 |  Rhayader | 

    Interesting announcement, particularly in light of Ammiano’s recent proposal to legalize it. This surely isn’t then end-all be-all, but I feel like momentum is starting to head in the right direction.

  17. #17 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    #15 nobahdi:
    Thanks. I was just too lazy to look that up.

  18. #18 |  chance | 


    Unless the law specifies that the DEA must raid clinics, it is well within the power of the POTUS to prioritize tasks and determine how the DEA will use its resources.

  19. #19 |  Credit Where Due: Obama Pulling Back in the War on Drugs Citizens? « ricketyclick | 

    […] The Agitator, Radley […]

  20. #20 |  Chuchundra | 

    FYI, both Pelosi and Reid oppose reinstituting the AGW ban.

  21. #21 |  Andrew | 

    Obama is probably just marshaling the manpower for gun raids.

    Those cancer patients are pushovers what with their wheelchairs and crutches. A guy with a rifle is a much tougher nut to crack.

  22. #22 |  Cynical In CA | 

    Chris K: “So lets not go sucking each others dicks just yet gentlemen”

    Winston Wolf, Pulp Fiction

  23. #23 |  djbeefhart` | 

    your link got drudged – nice work!

  24. #24 |  Speaking Of Federalism And Freedom | QandO | 

    […] Radley Balko says: It’ll be interesting to see if this tiny bit of federalism will hold should some states or cities decriminalize or even legalize marijuana entirely. […]

  25. #25 |  B | 

    I’m happy to hear Holder say this, to be sure.

    However, the first few weeks of the Pax Obama have certainly reinstated my default position of “I will believe it when I see it.” So I’ll be keeping my dick out of mouths and side dishes for the moment, and hoping for the best.

  26. #26 |  TC | 

    But the fucker is gonna come for your guns and ammo!

  27. #27 |  InFrequently Asked Questions | 

    Obama To End Federal Raids On Medical Marijuana Clinics…

    The DEA will stop raiding dispensaries and clinics that provide medical marijuana in states where it has been legalized. How will the drug warriors explain why the world does not end in a spectacular ball of sulfur, hellfire and brimstone?

  28. #28 |  Frank | 

    #20 They’re smart enough to realize that putting the AWB back up will mean loss of their majority in 2010. Democrats have finally gotten the word (mostly) that gun control laws are political suicide.

  29. #29 |  Andy Craig | 

    Note that Federal raids in states without medical marijuana laws will continue. So this isn’t even as federalist as some people are making it out to be- people in California still have to subsidize the drug war, including against marijuana patients, in Arkansas.

    A step in the right direction, though.

  30. #30 |  Phelps | 

    The raids have continued at the same pace since he was sworn in, and all we have heard is talk. I’ll believe him when the actions change. BHO is the king of telling people what he thinks they want to hear, and then going along with business as usual.

  31. #31 |  Greg N. | 

    Shouldn’t this announcement move the liberty meter a bit?

  32. #32 |  markm | 

    Not until it’s backed by action.

    And meanwhile, Holder is lying about guns in Mexico to try to justify a new “assault weapon” ban. That is, he is saying that Mexican drug gangs with full-auto weapons and grenades, in which the legal trade in the USA has been regulated to almost non-existence ever since 1934, requires banning semi-auto rifles in the USA.

  33. #33 |  Ruffle Bikini | 

    This and stem cell research being back on the table are good news. Printing a trillion dollars, not such good news. Glad you could find the good in this early administration though.

  34. #34 |  nemo | 

    I consider this as only being a bow to the obvious.

    The Treasury is busted, the currency inflated, our foreign creditors won’t lend anymore until we get our economic house in order, and that means some cuts in Gub’mint ‘services’ will have to be made. And one such ‘service’ should be the DrugWar as it is presently waged.

    A politically safer move to make now, given that only a very few people (cops, judges, prosecutors, prison builders, etc.) actually benefit from it, while everybody else pays for it. When Joe Sixpack is staring at a pink slip, and is wondering how he’s going to feed and house his family, he’s not going to want to hear some fat-cat bureaucrat saying that he can’t have the money he needs in unemployment insurance because it’s already allocated to ‘save the children from drugs!’

    This could be the first step in a gradual drawing down of the DrugWar, using an economic reason as cover to counter the inevitable screeching that one may expect from the sado-moralists. The same thing happened during alcohol Prohibition; seeing as history does tend to repeat itself, we may be seeing the same process in operation yet again…

  35. #35 |  San Diego Flowers | 

    About time to legalize all of it and stop wasting tax payer’s dollars on jailing drug dealers.