President Obama’s drug policy adviser on medical marijuana and enforcement
Share Now on:
On election day, voters in Washington and Colorado went for President Obama. They also voted to legalize marijuana.
But Gil Kerlikowske, the president’s top drug adviser, says that states that have passed their own laws to legalize or decriminalize marijuana shouldn’t assume the federal government will look the other way.
“There has been nothing that I have seen or heard from the Department of Justice that says ‘Look we’re not going to continue to enforce federal law,'” he says. “And we’re going to continue to take a hard look at those people who are involved in making money on essentially a violation of federal law.”
But Kerlikowske is no fan of the traditional approach to the “War on Drugs.” He says “it’s a huge mistake to give people the impression that this is a win or lose situation…we have to work really hard in this country to give young people the foundation they need to achieve what they want to do.”
Kerlikowske favors treatment for addiction over incarceration, a preference that is reflected in his most recent budget.
Marketplace is on a mission.
We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.
Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?