Barack Obama's position on illegal drugs

By chillinwill · Oct 10, 2008 · ·
  1. chillinwill
    October 8, 10:00 PM
    by Jane Roh, Philadelphia News Examiner

    As a legislator from the Midwest, Barack Obama has supported initiatives cracking down on meth. As president, Obama says he would seek stiffer penalties for meth producers and distributors.

    On the overall war on drugs, Obama is mainly in line with his party. He has questioned harsh penalties for drug dealers, though as a presidential candidate has reversed previous criticism of the war on drugs. For instance, in 2004 Obama suggested marijuana ought to be decriminalized. In one of the presidential primary debates, however, he seemed to reverse his position.

    As recently as March, Obama indicated he was open to changes in federal law he hasn't spoken forcefully about applying parity as president.

    Obama has praised the role of drug courts in reducing prison recidivism, and says he would beef up funding for the Byrne-JAG program -- which was reduced under President Bush -- in an effort to target drug-related criminal activity across the country. Obama says he would also pursue a law enforcement pact with Latin American and Caribbean nations to stem drug trafficking and gang activity. restricting medical marijuana use. Obama has said that parity in crack and cocaine sentencing should be retroactively applied, though

    Because of his background as a community organizer in Chicago, Obama often speaks passionately about the problems of inner cities. He promotes comprehensive approaches to inner-city blight, such as more after-school programs for youths and drug rehabiliation for inmates. He has indicated support for needle-exchange programs to cut down the spread of HIV/AIDS, and says that as president he would restrict imports of "precursor" chemicals, which are used to make drugs like meth.


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  1. El Calico Loco
    Re: Barack Obama on illegal drugs

    Questions I would like to see someone ask the candidates:

    McCain: should your wife be in prison right now?

    Obama: at what point in your life would you have been better off, had you gone to prison?

  2. Nature Boy
    Re: Barack Obama on illegal drugs

    I really can't see Obama altering current drug prohibition. The issue is set on autopilot with more and more non-violent drug incarcerations during every presidential reign. The only possible advancement I can imagine is more leeway for medical marijuana users or that some individual states may decriminalise small amounts but I don't envisage any change in federal law. The only presidential candidates that would have notably changed drug laws were Kucinich, Paul and Nader along with some other even lesser-known individuals.
  3. Mr. Giraffe
    Re: Barack Obama on illegal drugs

    The one good thing you can say for Obama's potential drug policy is that he would stop federal raids on medical cannabis users.
  4. Pope Albacore
    Re: Barack Obama on illegal drugs

    Being the cynical person I am, I will have to see it to believe it. We all know that politicians carefully calculate and craft their honey-laced words just to get elected. I think very little of what spews from the mouths of presidential hopefuls, as should every freethinking person here in this "New Rome". Perhaps, presenting this facade to the more "liberal" target audience is just a clever ruse. Maybe not. What I do know is that the last 8 years have been one disaster after another and we could use a major change of direction. Obama has really been playing that card. Lets hope for the best.

    -Pope Albacore
  5. lostmente
    swim believes drugs should become legal when people don't need them to exist. but then swim is a commie bastard at times.

    I wonder if any presidential candidates have just winged it, maybe I'm caught up in the idea that our current world order is more of an accident than a grand plan
  6. lexifer
    lostmente, both former presidential candidate for the Republican nomination (go figure) Ron Paul (Texas congressman) and Libertarian Party presidential candidate Bob Barr both call for the legalization of drugs. Ron paulmay just call for marijuana legalization on the other hand, swim's not entirely sure which it is, but Barr definately wants to legalize all drugs. no way he'll get elected though. Obama's is the best choice this year, that doesn't say much though. he would probably look at decriminalization and medical marijuana but swim doubts it would be one of his top priorities considering this disastrous economy, and equally disastrous situations in Afghanistan and Iraq to deal with once he bceomes president. might be second term material for him to work through though. fingers crossed.
  7. El Calico Loco
    Ron Paul's position on the drug war is the standard libertarian one: drug addiction is a medical problem, and people shouldn't go to jail just for possessing or selling drugs.

    I'm afraid I don't trust Bob Barr; I think he's a wolf in sheep's clothes. Which leaves me wondering who to vote for, since I usually cast my meaningless little protest vote for the Libertarians.

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