Grading the Presidential Candidates on Marijuana: Donald Trump


More than the course of of ten weeks, we not too long ago ran a series of weblog posts that take a close appear at the Democratic Celebration candidates for President in 2020. We examined each and every candidate’s historic strategy to marijuana law and policy, and we also canvassed their existing respective stances on marijuana.

In all, we covered Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Corey Booker, Beto O’Rourke, Andrew Yang, Amy Klobuchar and Julián Castro. Currently, we conclude by turning our concentrate on the President of the United States and presumptive Republican Celebration nominee, Donald Trump.

Grade: D+

Stance on marijuana: Donald Trump’s stance on marijuana is unclear. He has expressed assistance for health-related marijuana as properly as for enabling states to make a decision whether or not to legalize or not. As president, having said that, his rhetoric and actions have flip-flopped.

History with marijuana legislation: For the duration of his 2016 presidential campaign,Trump asserted that, as president, he would enable states to pick whether or not to legalize marijuana without having interference from the federal government.

Following his election, having said that, Trump’s position absolutely reversed. In 2017, then-Lawyer Common Jeff Sessions rescinded the Cole Memo, an Obama-era policy of not interfering with states who have legalized marijuana. Trump’s Press Secretary at the time, Sean Spicer, then implied that there would be a crackdown on legalization states. Sessions, having said that, did not especially order law enforcement to direct extra sources toward enforcing marijuana laws.

In April, Trump stated that he would possibly sign the bi-partisan STATES Act, a bill that would amend the Controlled Substance Act to enable states to legalize marijuana. Below Trump, existing Lawyer Common William Barr, even though not necessarily pro-legalization, has stated that he desires Congress to approve legislation that would finish the conflict in between federal and state laws surrounding marijuana. As the 2020 election draws nearer, the Trump administration’s assistance of pro-legalization legislation is probably a strategic move taking into consideration that the majority of Americans assistance legalizing marijuana.

Even though Trump has supported the STATES Act, he has not advocated for legalizing marijuana. Marijuana does not seem on his site or social media. Not too long ago, Trump has asserted that, if reelected, he would enable states to legalize without having federal interference. Sadly, he has not stated he would reschedule marijuana. Even if states can legalize marijuana, marijuana’s status as a schedule I drug is a substantial barrier to investigation and prevents veterans from becoming in a position to get their health-related marijuana prescriptions by way of the VA.

Extra broadly, Trump has perpetuated the War on Drugs, a campaign which has imprisoned numerous Americans on drug charges (which includes convictions for marijuana) and fueled violent drug cartels more than the previous handful of decades. In 2017, Trump complimented Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on his policy of extrajudicial killing of drug customers. This year, Trump pressured Mexico to bolster their military efforts to quit drug trafficking by threatening to impose tariffs on the nation. He justifies his border wall as a way to quit drugs from getting into the US, regardless of the reality that most drugs are trafficked into the US by way of legal ports.

More than the previous handful of decades, many research have concluded that military intervention is ineffective in stopping the drug trade. Crackdown efforts as an alternative finish up growing the worth of drugs (mainly because the stakes for trafficking them are greater) and in turn fuel drug cartels. Merely place, the drug trade will continue as lengthy as there exists a demand for drugs in America.

Even though Trump has allocated funds for addiction remedy applications, it is nowhere close to sufficient to address America’s opioid epidemic.

In his favor, Trump signed “The Initial Step Act” into law which, amongst other items, will cut down the minimum sentences for specific non-violent drug crimes. Present Lawyer Common Barr also appears extra open to criminal justice reform than Sessions (a shift from the “tough on crime” stance he maintained in the 90s as Lawyer Common for President George H.W. Bush). His administration, having said that, is however to acknowledge the criminalization of marijuana (and, extra broadly, the War on Drugs) as a criminal justice concern. Persons of colour are disproportionately arrested for marijuana, regardless of equivalent prices of marijuana use across racial groups. Marijuana have to be legalized across all 50 states in order to quit the perpetuation of racism in our justice program.

Conclusion: Donald Trump receives a “D+” grade mainly because his administration rescinded the Cole Memo and referred to as for a crackdown on legalization states and mainly because he broke his campaign guarantee to let states make a decision whether or not or not to legalize. Extra usually, his guarantee to let states pick whether or not to legalize would nevertheless leave marijuana illegal at the federal level. His inconsistency on cannabis is the greatest concern. He will say 1 issue and then do some thing absolutely distinct. His actions frequently do not match his words.


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