Obama: Recreational pot not feds’ concern

December 15th, 2012 by admin Leave a reply »

1:00 AM

Obama: Recreational pot not feds’ concern

Federal agents have ‘a lot to do,’ he says, without dogging users in the states where an ounce is legal.


WASHINGTON – President Obama says federal authorities should not target recreational marijuana use in two Western states that voted to make it legal, given limited government resources and growing public acceptance of the controlled substance.

Obama’s first comments on the issue come weeks after Washington state and Colorado voters supported legalizing cannabis last month in ballot measures that stand in direct opposition of federal law.

“It does not make sense from a prioritization point of view for us to focus on recreational drug users in a state that has already said that under state law that’s legal,” he told ABC News in part of an interview released Friday. “At this point (in) Washington and Colorado, you’ve seen the voters speak on this issue. And, as it is, the federal government has a lot to do when it comes to criminal prosecutions,” he said.

Marijuana remains an illegal drug under U.S. federal law, but Washington and Colorado on Nov. 6 became the first states in the nation to make it legal for individuals to possess up to an ounce of it for private use.

The Department of Justice has maintained that pot remains a federally controlled substance, and states have been looking for guidance from federal authorities on how they will handle the conflict with state laws.

Obama’s comments do not mean that Justice Department officials have completed

Article source: http://www.pressherald.com/news/nationworld/obama-recreational-pot-not-feds-concern_2012-12-15.html