Congressman Dana Rohrabacher of California may be one of the most vocal proponents of legal cannabis on Capitol Hill. But in some circles, he is also considered to be quite eccentric.
For nearly 30-years, this Republican soldier has been advocating in Washington D.C. Yet, despite getting Congress to support medical marijuana, his voice is also behind questionable comments and even a few conspiracy theories.
We would be remiss to discount his importance to the cannabis movement. After all, he is out there on the front lines.But is Rohrabacher the kind of off-beat politician that threatens the progress of national reform? Is this Congressman sabotaging legal cannabis?
Dinosaurs and Ancient Martians
Representative Dana Rohrabacher of California’s 48th District, a longtime member of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, once told his constituents that the concept of man-made global warming was a scam.
Although an IPCC report concluded that humans have been the driving force for climate change, the Republican stood against science. He told the study authors that “dinosaur flatulence” was more likely to blame. Rohrabacher later said his comments were just a joke.
Rohrabacher also asked whether Mars was once inhabited by an ancient civilization. It was during a Science, Space and Technology Space Subcommittee meeting that he questioned NASA officials about the possibility of Martians inhabiting the solar system.
Scientists told the Republican that there was no evidence that intelligent life ever roamed the Red Planet. As many of us have often pondered the possibility of life on other planets, we’ll let this go. After all, an absence of evidence does not necessarily indicate evidence of absence.
Robert Kennedy and “Bad Arabs”
Representative Rohrabacher became obsessed with the 1968 assassination of Senator Robert Kennedy. He believed the LAPD covered up the fact that Sirhan Sirhan, convicted in 1969, was part of a Palestinian conspiracy.
Sure, to this day, some folks remain unsettled about the details surrounding the murder of Robert Kennedy, but Rohrabacher has, perhaps, taken the paranoia on this subject to a whole other level.
A 2008 report from the Pasadena Weekly indicates that Rohrabacher visited Sirhan at the Corcoran State Prison in hopes of getting to the bottom of the Kennedy assassination. But he thought it would be difficult to secure a meeting as Dana Rohrabacher.
So, in order to get a face-to-face with Sirhan, Rohrabacher reportedly disguised himself as a woman named Diana. He then “repeatedly badgered” the prisoner for a confession.
Oklahoma City Bombing and Other Conspiracies
Incidentally, Rohrabacher pulled a similar stunt in order to interview Oklahoma City bombing co-conspirator, Terry Nichols. He reportedly traveled to a Colorado prison to talk to Nichols because he was convinced that Muslims were responsible for the terrorist act, not a couple of local boys.
And finally, last year, Representative Rohrabacher called the neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia “a total hoax.” He believes liberals orchestrated the violent scene in an effort to put President Donald Trump “on the spot.”
He told the San Francisco Chronicle that the commotion stemming from the rally, which resulted in the death of Heather Hayer, was “baloney.” That all of the insanity between white supremacists and counter-protestors was masterminded by Hilary Clinton and Bernie Sanders supporters “in order to have this confrontation.”
The Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment
Despite these past doings, Representative Rohrabacher is a salvation’s wing for medical marijuana. In 2013, he proposed a unique plan designed to prevent the Justice Department from spending tax dollars to investigate, raid and prosecute the medical marijuana community.
And it worked. For the past few years, the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment has been part of the federal budget. It continues to keep medical marijuana states safe from federal interference.
But this temporary reform could end up being Rohrabacher’s swan song. The lawmaker has signed on in support of other marijuana-related measures. However, Congressional leadership has not given them any consideration.
Final Hit: This Congressman Could Be Sabotaging Legal Cannabis
Is it possible that the eccentric, Republican voice of this long time lawmaker could be part of the reason marijuana legalization seems to have hit a snag at the national level?
It could be that all of the influential members of Congress see a man passionate for the cause, but then they find themselves concerned about how it might look to join him.
A representative for marijuana reform connected to conspiracy theories is not likely taken seriously by Congressional members. Yet the legal cannabis advocacy community continues to embrace him. After all, he’s a high-level member of Congress who is vocally supportive of the cause.