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News & Music Contributors
Sun December 16, 2012
Obama's pot comments leave more questions than answers
OLYMPIA, Wash. – President Obama’s first comments about marijuana legalization in Washington and Colorado leave more questions than answers. The President tells ABC news that federal agents have – quote – “bigger fish to fry” than recreational pot users.
In an interview with ABC’s Barbara Walters, President Obama says about marijuana enforcement: “It would not make sense for us after recreational users in states that have determined that it’s legal.” But that comment does not necessarily reflect a change in federal policy.
A spokeswoman for the U-S Attorney’s office in Seattle says federal prosecutors there focus on large complex criminal organizations, not smalltime users. In a statement, Governor-elect Jay Inslee called the President’s words “welcome news,” but said several questions remain. They include how federal authorities will respond to state authorized marijuana growers and sellers.
U-S Attorney General Eric Holder indicated earlier this week that the Justice Department will issue a policy “relatively soon” on the new pot legalization laws in Washington and Colorado.