As we’ve covered before at Republic Report, one of the reasons why marijuana remains illegal and the drug war continues to rage is because special interest groups like police unions and the alcohol industry spend a lot of money to lobby for the drug war.
In Oregon, advocates of medical marijuana and other anti-drug war activists decided that they’d use a similar tactic to fight the crackdown on state medical marijuana laws.
The pro-reform Drug Policy Alliance’s Drug Policy Action, along with other anti-drug war activists, donated big to Democratic attorney general primary candidate Ellen Rosenblum, who wanted to de-prioritize cracking down on pot. The Washington Post reports that anti-drug war cash made up a quarter of the campaign donations to her campaign. Drug Policy Action donated $80,000, and $70,000 more came from marijuana reform supporter John Sperling, head of the parent company of the for-profit University of Phoenix. Oregon law allows unlimited donations to state election campaigns. Citizens for Sensible Law Enforcement, an independent group, spent $40,000 to advocate for Rosenblum and attack the marijuana policy record of her opponent, interim U.S. attorney Dwight Holton.
Rosenblum defeated Holton, who had been leading the federal crackdown on medical marijuana in the state, and had called Oregon’s liberal medical marijuana law a “trainwreck.”
Altogether, anti-drug war groups spent nearly $200,000 to unseat Holton and to back Rosenblum. “As attorney general, I will make marijuana enforcement a low priority, and protect the rights of medical marijuana patients,” she promised.
I am proud of my neighbors to the north!
If I were AG, I'd arrest, try, convict, and lock up in private prisons federal agents who tried to subvert laws enacted by the people. No state has the balls to do that. Yet.