Democratic Presidential Candidate Dean Phillips Says He Didn’t ‘Literally’ Mean Biden Should Start Smoking Marijuana ‘Now’

November 30, 2023 · marijuanamoment-net

Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN), a 2024 Democratic presidential candidate, didn’t “literally” mean it when he said President Joe Biden should smoke some marijuana earlier this month, he now says.

“Truth is I wouldn’t recommend he start now,” the congressman said on Tuesday, reversing the tongue-in-cheek comments he made at a New Hampshire campaign event, where he also cast doubt on whether the president has smoked “or even smelled weed.”

At the time, he said indulging in some cannabis might help Biden understand the “awfully hypocritical” position of barring people from White House employment over eating a marijuana gummy when they could, in theory, “drink a half gallon of Jack Daniels at night and report to work” the next day without penalties.

While Phillips has now reframed his recommendation for Biden to use cannabis, he said that points stands that “it’s absolutely absurd that a naturally occurring plant on which no human has overdosed remains a Schedule I narcotic in America.”

“It should be legalized immediately and turned over to the States for regulation,” he said.

What prompted the reversal seems to be a Politico story about Phillips’s campaign that led with his earlier cannabis comment in the story and headline, which was subsequently pictured in a screenshot on the satirical X account “New York Times Pitchbot.”

The congressman also separately told Politico that his suggestion that the president begin toking up wasn’t meant to be taken “literally.”

Phillips, who announced his run for the Democratic presidential nomination late last month, has a consistent record supporting broad drug policy reform in Congress. He’s supported federal marijuana legalization, pushed the Biden administration to provide relief to those who’ve been criminalized over cannabis and advocated for research into the therapeutic potential of psychedelics.

“Cannabis is still a Schedule I narcotic in the United States of America, like heroin. It’s nonsensical,” Phillips said this month. “But this is your federal government, with people who think that’s fine.”

The congressman’s commentary on drug policy issues aligns with his voting record, which shows ongoing support for reform across the board—including incremental measures on marijuana banking, as well as more comprehensive proposals to end federal cannabis prohibition while promoting social equity.

He’s said that while he thinks the president has done an effective job to date, Biden’s slumping poll numbers raise concerns about his viability in the election, and he’s hoping to offer an alternative pathway for Democrats.

While Biden has steadfastly maintained his opposition to adult-use marijuana legalization—a position that the White House affirmed has not changed since Ohio voted to enact the reform—he did grant a mass pardon for people who’ve committed federal cannabis possession offenses last year, while also directing an administrative review into marijuana scheduling.

That directive resulted in a recommendation from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to move marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule III under the CSA. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is now reviewing the health agency’s findings as it prepares to make a final scheduling determination.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), a founding member of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus who is retiring after the end of this Congress, recently told Marijuana Moment that, if he were Biden, he would act more boldly to end cannabis criminalization ahead of next year’s election, in part to “atone” for his record championing punitive drug policies during his time in the Senate.

Phillips’s position on the issue, meanwhile, closely aligns with the majority public opinion, with a recent Gallup poll showing support for marijuana legalization at a record 70 percent high. That includes 87 percent of Democrats. (Full Story)

In category:Politics
Next Post

Same Old Banana in the Tailpipe for the SAFER Banking Act - Sen. Schumer Says He Needs Major Republican Support to Pass Bill

Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is actively working to secure Republican support for the long-awaited marijuana banking reform bill. Schumer has invested considerable political capital in advancing the SAFER Banking Act. The proposed legislation, if enacted, would prevent federal regulators from…
Read
Previous Post

Supreme Court Weighs Whether Hemp Legalization Affects Gun Possession Mandatory Minimums For Man With Marijuana Convictions

The Supreme Court on Monday heard the case of a defendant seeking to reduce his criminal penalty for firearm possession as the result of the federal government’s legalization of hemp in 2018. At issue are the boundaries of the Armed…
Read
Random Post

Minnesota poised to become 23rd state to legalize recreational marijuana

Minnesota is poised to become the 23rd state to legalize recreational marijuana, after the state Senate gave its final stamp of approval on legislation early Saturday morning. The bill, which would allow adults over 21 to carry up to 2…
Read
Random Post

Best Scary Movies to Watch When You’re High

The Halloween season is a time for many traditions. Some, like finding a costume, are timeless, while others, like the annual marketing blitz for products featuring pumpkin spice, are more difficult to decipher. One thing that is definitively October, however,…
Read
Random Post

Massachusetts’ Harpoon Brewery Launches its First THC Beverage

Massachusetts-based Harpoon Brewery has launched its first THC-infused beverage, Rec. Weed, in partnership with Novel Beverage Company. Harpoon Brewery has launched its first THC-based beverage, Rec. Weed, in partnership with Novel Beverage Company. The company describes Rec. Weed as “hop-forward…
Read
Random Post

What 3 Common Health Conditions Can THC Help Treat in Humans?

3 Common Health Conditions That THC Can Treat The number of conditions that cannabis has been studied to treat continues to grow each year. There are some health conditions where psychoactive THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and calming CBD (cannabidiol) work better than the other, with research to back…
Read