Vice President Kamala Harris Says Her and President Biden “Changed Federal Marijuana Policy”, Advocates Remain Confused

Nearly a month after Vice President Kamala Harris said her and President Biden “changed federal marijuana policy”, marijuana reform advocates remain confused about what she meant, and why it hasn’t been addressed.

“We changed federal marijuana policy, because nobody should have to go to jail just for smoking weed”, Vice President Harris said in a February 9 campaign video, posted on the social media platform X. She follows this up by saying “elections matter, and we have more work to do.” The video currently has over 436,000 views.

Those in support of reforming federal marijuana law remain confused at what was meant by this statement. Initially many thought the video was simply posted prematurely, given the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is currently considering a request from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to reschedule marijuana and an announcement could come any day. However, over three weeks have passed and the video remains live and unaltered, with no official statement made by VP Harris on what she meant and with no news regarding the DEA’s rescheduling plans.

Even after being criticized by groups like the Cannabis Freedom Party (CFP), VP Harris and her team have given no response, while refusing to take the video down.

Even more confusing, the video includes a map of legal marijuana states that is blatantly incorrect (see below). VP Harris has been called out by this by numerous media outlets, but has refused to address it.

“I take no pleasure in saying that the administration is willfully lying to the American public, but that’s exactly what they are doing when they stand up and proclaim they are keeping people from going to jail because of marijuana,” says CFP co-founder Jim Mcmahon. “Yes, in October of 2022, President Biden issued a general pardon for federal offenders with simple possession, but let’s be clear, that pardon and his subsequent pardons let no one out of prison and is not criminal justice reform to keep people from going to jail.”

Kyle Turley, a former offensive lineman with the NFL and co-founder of the CFP, says “We call on President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to live up to their administration’s promises and work with Congress to actually implement comprehensive cannabis policy reform. The time for action is now. Every day of inaction results in more arrests, more lives disrupted, and more opportunities missed in creating a fair and accessible cannabis industry”.

On the campaign video, there are dozens of comments with people asking VP Harris what she meant by her remarks, or criticizing her for what they say is a clear lie. None have a response from VP Harris or one of her official staffers.

Poling released earlier this year found that if marijuana is rescheduled to Schedule III, President Biden will experience an 11% boost in his favorability rating.

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