Marijuana Legalization Vote Erupts in Name-Calling

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  Marijuana Legalization Vote Erupts in Name-Calling

Posted by CN Staff on September 05, 2014 at 16:32:55 PT
By Jeff Barnard, Associated Press  
Source: Associated Press 

Grants Pass, Ore. -- Oregon’s upcoming vote on whether to legalize marijuana has generated a name-calling dispute between a congressman who wants to overhaul federal marijuana policy and a prominent district attorney who has been speaking out about the dangers of pot.The spat between U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., and Clatsop County District Attorney Josh Marquis erupted over whether upcoming events featuring national anti-drug activist Kevin Sabet shortly before mail ballots go out to voters amounts to political activity, and whether federal funds can be used to finance the events.
Blumenauer on Friday sent a letter to White House drug czar Michael Botticelli calling for a federal investigation into whether federal funds financing the Oregon Marijuana Education Tour were being illegally used to pay for political activity.“The bias of the speakers selected, the overall one-sided focus of the events, and the proximity between these events and the upcoming election are cause for concern,” Blumenauer wrote.Marquis shot back that Blumenauer was a bully.“He is trying to bully people — the remaining members of the tour — into not talking about marijuana,” said Marquis, the Oregon District Attorneys Association point man on Measure 91. “They are so afraid of any conversation they are willing to essentially make the allegations in Congressman Blumenauer’s letter.”Blumenauer countered that Marquis must have forgotten they were meeting face to face next week for a debate on Measure 91 at a Salem City Club luncheon.Blumenauer added that organizers of the tour had used federal funds to pay for newspaper ads about the dangers of marijuana.Meanwhile, the Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association is taking over funding of the events, cutting a check for $15,000, said association manager Darrell Fuller. Fuller is listed on the secretary of state election website as the contact for the campaign organization No on 91.Fuller said there has never been controversy about the summit and tour before, but “because there happened to be something on the ballot having to do with marijuana, people are jumping up and down waving their hands. We saw value in still having the summit, so we are stepping in and covering the money they were losing.”The summit in Madras and subsequent tour was originally financed by federal drug education grants distributed by the Oregon Health Authority to counties, said agency spokeswoman Rebeka Gipson-King.When the authority saw a flier Aug. 19 advertising the tour, “we realized the nature of the event had changed from what our understanding was,” Gipson-King said. “It was advertising Kevin Sabet. He has a reputation for being anti-marijuana legalization. That combined with the timing of the event right before the election made us decide not to participate.”Sabet is director of the anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana.The state agency pulled employees who had been slated to moderate panels at the summit, and on Aug. 28 Karen Wheeler, manager of the Addictions and Mental Health Division, sent an email to county participants urging them to contact legal counsel over the legality of using federal funds to pay for the event.Marquis said the sheriff’s association funding will allow the summit and tour to go forward, though with only about four or five stops at other cities.Fuller said that he had hired Mandi Plunckett, who had been an organizer of the summit, to work for the No on 91 campaign.Source: Associated Press (Wire) Author: Jeff Barnard, Associated Press Published: September 5, 2014Copyright: 2014 The Associated PressCannabisNews -- Cannabis Archives 

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Comment #9 posted by runruff on September 07, 2014 at 21:23:51 PT

Very good doc here. war on drugs.
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Comment #8 posted by swazi-x on September 07, 2014 at 16:59:42 PT

Different Rules
Prohibitionists in government take for granted that the feds will fund their lies because the feds have done this for the last 75+ years.If they want that Sabet moron to speak, then they need to hire Robert Platshorn to speak on the same podium and be given equal time on the same ticket. Pro and Anti weed=fair and balanced. Platshorn would not only devastate the prohibitionist's arguments, but likely would completely embarass them in front of an audience paying even a little attention.The reason they won't do that is because all the honest science and anectdotal evidence over the last 10,000 years humans have used this plant shows legalization is the only choice for any free country. 
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Comment #7 posted by observer on September 06, 2014 at 15:22:46 PT

Cowards vs Big Bad Bullies
So let me get this straight ...This Clatsop County government prosecutor Josh Marquis, who for all his career has made his living by putting people in slave-prison for years, at gun-point, over marijuana "crimes" - and stealing their property and draining their bank accounts - (as well as from taxes), this Prosecutor calls U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, a "bully" because Blumenauer objects to federal funds being used on the prosecutor's self-serving anti-pot propaganda? reminds me of the ever-recurring ten-cop thug-scrum beating the life out of some small unarmed poor person over some (engineered) instance of ostensible "non-compliance". They feared for their very lives, the police always say, as they gang up on and beat some homeless person to death. Police were scared! Bullied! -------I have a question for those who say if you knuckle under to the nice officer and obey their every command/dictate/order/imperative that justice will prevail and you'll be fine if you haven't done anything wrong. The question is this: if you're in a car, say, and suddenly you find that there are cops pointing guns at you screaming orders where one cop screams, "Get out of the car!" and the other at the same time screams, "Don't move!" What do you do? Do the expert fascist instructors with tenure at the Police College have an answer for that situation?
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Comment #6 posted by Oleg the Tumor on September 06, 2014 at 09:07:05 PT

Is There a Bully in the Room? No Really?
“The bias of the speakers selected, the overall one-sided focus of the events, and the proximity between these events and the upcoming election are cause for concern,” Blumenauer wrote.Marquis shot back that Blumenauer was a bully.OUCH! YOU CALL THAT A BEATING? GET UP AND FIGHT FOR YOUR LOSING POSITION LIKE YOU WERE PAID TO DO!Blumenauer is fighting for our collective sanity. We need the jobs, NOW!I hope Blumenauer treats Marquis like a "red-headed step-child" at the debate. All he needs is the truth.Who is bullying who here? 
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Comment #5 posted by Sam Adams on September 06, 2014 at 08:44:57 PT

can't wait for election day
It seems like there has been a large boost in support for legalization in polling since Colorado's law passed. Can't wait to see what happens in AK, OR, and DC in November! If we get three wins with higher percentage than 2012 (55%) things will go downhill for the prohibitionists fast. 
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Comment #4 posted by runruff on September 06, 2014 at 07:43:22 PT

Kleptocracy too. (Greek)
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Comment #3 posted by runruff on September 06, 2014 at 07:39:05 PT

A government that rules by the steal.
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Comment #2 posted by The GCW on September 05, 2014 at 20:34:46 PT

No platform for IGNOIDS.
Lowly cannabis prohibitionists are not welcome where the future begins.The days of caging responsible adults who choose to use the relatively safe, extremely popular God-given plant cannabis are almost over.A few bad apples are left to overcome and that form of discrimination will be over.-0-One game plan that all pro-RE-legazation efforts may consider is to invite the IGNOIDS to all their events and advertise to come hear what they're saying so to help end ONE OF AMERICA'S WORST POLICY FAILURES IN HISTORY.Hear Ye Hear Ye: Come hear the IGNOID lies, half-truths and propaganda ONE LAST TIME. -And send them on their way to less fortunate states.
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on September 05, 2014 at 18:49:10 PT

We are not affraid :0)
The only ones who would even put their shoes on to go hear this man are a few hangers on and hopeful that they can hang on by a thread to this convoluted, draconian attack on my inalienable rights. He will not gain any support , in fact, going by what I know he is a tired old joke as well as his message. I hope they spend all their money, energy and political capital on this thing. So much more the humiliation, rejection and despair when they loose. Don't worry about Oregon, we've had the fed rubbed in our face and our citizens robbed enough. Their game is up! 
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