Democratic Party Officially Includes Marijuana Reform in Its 2016 Platform

The Democratic National Committee, which is led by embattled anti-pot proponent Debbie Wasserman Schultz, has officially made the decision to include marijuana reform in the party’s 2016 platform.

Over the weekend, the DNC announced the party was taking sides with the issue of taming the pot laws in the United States, a position that is said to include the elimination of the criminal penalties associated with the possession of marijuana, tearing down the barriers currently in place with respect the studying the plant’s therapeutic benefits, and allowing the scourge of prohibition to be severed at the neck in those states electing to make the cannabis industry a part of their economic profile.

In a statement, the party said: “We believe that the states should be laboratories of democracy on the issue of marijuana, and those states that want to decriminalize marijuana should be able to do so. We support policies that will allow more research to be done on marijuana, as well as reforming our laws to allow legal marijuana businesses to exist without uncertainty. And we recognize our current marijuana laws have had an unacceptable disparate impact, with arrest rates for marijuana possession among African-Americans far outstripping arrest rates among whites despite similar usage rates.”

While the DNC’s latest stance on pot reform is a positive step forward, it does not go as deep as presidential candidate Bernie Sanders called for, last week, ahead of the party’s announcement. Sanders, who is still seemingly swinging for the Democratic nomination despite Hillary Clinton having already claimed her position on the ticket, was pushing for the DNC to embrace the total elimination of pot prohibition in the United States.

In a recent email, Sanders suggested that the agenda of the 12 million voters who stood up for the “political revolution” should be a priority for the DNC, calling for supporters to visit his website and select from more than 20 political platform ideas that they would like to see the Democrats get behind. Among the list was to “Remove Marijuana From The Federal Controlled Substances Act.”

According to, the concept of amending the national drug policy was echoed last Friday during a Democratic Platform Drafting hearing in St. Louis, where Sanders-appointed panel member Bill McKibben told the room that “The idea that marijuana is maintained in federal policy as a drug equivalent to heroin or cocaine or methamphetamine is not only silly, it’s also damaged millions of lives at this point as people have had to cope with the repercussions of that unsound federal policy.

“We’ve begun to see experimentation in states with good effect,” he continued, “and it’s important that the federal government let that experimentation continue in full without any of the problems that are caused by marijuana continuing to be a federally scheduled drug.”

Unfortunately, while it does not appear the Democrats will enter into the final stretch of the election season by taking a bold leap in supporting the end of marijuana prohibition, the party’s decision to side with any pot reform, at all, should be considered, at bare minimum, a victory for the cause. After all, it was not that long ago when DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz told The New York Times that she didn’t think the United States should legalize marijuana because it is a gateway drug. Of course, that statement caused the Florida Congresswoman to catch a substantial amount of heat from cannabis advocates all over the country because it was later revealed that her opinion might have been influenced by the thousands of dollars in campaign donations she has received throughout the years from the alcohol industry – makers of a socially accepted substance that has been proven time and again to be the real gateway to addiction.

Although the party’s position on pot reform is likely in the bag, Tom Angell with the Marijuana Majority says the DNC’s marijuana platform could still be revised in the coming weeks.

  1. We can start down the pathway that the Democratic party has invited us to take by reforming the current circumlocutory definition of marijuana in the CSA to distinguish the “marijuana plant” from marijuana itself. This reform will allow the versatility of the cannabis plant to be revived by de-scheduling the plant, while leaving marijuana in its debatable category of Schedule 1. When the cannabis plant is de-scheduled, then growing, possessing, vaping, dabbing, eating, and liquids use will also be de-scheduled. Only one single form of current marijuana use will be left as the final stepping stone of the pathway to legalization.

    This reform is just a simple, clear, understandable, and direct definition of marijuana. This reform will restore the Constitutional rights of the People to use the versatile cannabis plant in all other ways, until it is rescheduled. It will restore States Rights to exert some controls, it will restore banking privileges for cannabis commerce, and it will allow auxiliary corporate involvement. We the People are the ones who should contact our representatives in government to enact this reform of the CSA definition:

    Sec.802.(16). The term “marijuana” means all parts of the smoke produced by the combustion of the plant Cannabis sativa L. which is prohibited to be grown by or sold by any publicly traded corporation or subsidiary company.

    T-shirts showing an encoded version of this pathway can be worn as a conversation starter. Wear one now, then save it as a valuable memento of the success of your efforts:

    99% * 0.3% * 710 => 420

    This year is a good time to engage in the conversation with our friends, our family, and our representatives in Congress. We can do this. Yes we can!

    See the CSA definition of marijuana, and the Schedules here:

    Other uses for the plant Cannabis sativa L. are in Sec.7606 on page 264:

  2. Following any political party because they claim that they will legalize Cannabis is akin to selling your soul. Cannabis will be legal when it is more profitable to be so. No political party will legalize based on morality or the will of the people. They will legalize Cannabis because lobbyists pay them to do so. Hillary wants to bring in millions upon millions of Muslims to America, and there is no way they intend to live in peace. I do not need government permission to smoke Cannabis so why the heII would I vote for them based on what their stance on Cannabis is?

    Screw you Dems and Repubs.

  3. “The idea that marijuana is maintained in federal policy as a drug equivalent to heroin or cocaine or methamphetamine is not silly, it’s STUPID. That schedule requires that drugs in schedule 1 be extemely dangerous, addictive and medically useless, and as we all know, marijuana is NONE OF THE ABOVE. That’s not silly, it’s stupid.

  4. Does High Times now permit pot businesses to advertise in their comments sections? I have no problem with the businesses, and certainly none with the product, but advertising them in a place intended as a discussion forum seems to me to be inappropriate.

  5. It is this state compliant messaging in recent legislation that is opening the doors to the FDIC insured bank accounts and upcoming MasterCard/Visa interchange services now entering the markplace. #bankthaw

  6. More Pandering from the Dems. I guarantee you IF Hillery gets elected…nothing will be done. It’s more pandering to get votes…then when they get what they want they will do what they always do…screw the voters.

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