ChrisWeigant.com

Legalization's March Continues, With Or Without Democrats To Lead It

[ Posted Wednesday, November 30th, 2016 – 18:55 UTC ]

Nancy Pelosi just got re-elected to lead the House Democrats, but almost a third of them voted for a much younger representative who urged the party to shift focus in a major way. Hillary Clinton underperformed among minorities and young people, which contributed in a big way towards her loss in the presidential election. And Barack Obama, in a Rolling Stone "exit interview" just revived one of the major Democratic problems he ran against, by saying: "The point is that politics in a big, diverse country like this requires us to move the ball forward not in one long Hail Mary to the end zone, but to, you know, systemically make progress." This, from a man who ran on: "Yes we can!' as a campaign slogan.

Democrats are, obviously, in a phase of attempting to rediscover what their party stands for -- and how strongly they will stand for anything, as well. So far, the results are mixed, at best. Which leads me to (once again) suggest a rather obvious issue that would help Democrats with all of these problems: start supporting marijuana legalization in a big way. The time has come. It's time to stop timidly "leading from behind."

Right now, marijuana legalization is almost completely a non-partisan issue -- because most politicians (on both sides of the aisle) are scared of even addressing it in any meaningful way. What this means is that either party could champion it now, leaving the other party desperately trying to turn the clock backwards. To put this another way, if Democrats fail to act, Republicans might just steal the issue away from them -- which would give young voters an actual reason to vote for them. Think this is impossible? Imagine Donald Trump deciding one day to just let the states handle it -- and then imagine how the Republican Party would fall in line with his new thinking. It could indeed happen, in other words.

President Obama was actually talking about marijuana legalization in that quote, above. He had a lot to say on the issue, most of which was pretty disappointing. When the interviewer tried to compare the legalization issue with how Obama pushed the idea of gay marriage "right over the edge," Obama flatly disagreed, saying:

I don't think that's how it works. If you will recall, what happened was, first, very systematically, I changed laws around hospital visitation for people who were same-sex partners. I then assigned the Pentagon to do a study on getting rid of "don't ask, don't tell," which then got the buy-in of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and we were then able to [repeal] "don’t ask, don’t tell." We then filed a brief on Proposition 8 out in California. And then, after a lot of groundwork was laid, then I took a position.

This, sadly, is pretty accurate. Obama was never a champion of marriage equality in the 2008 campaign, and he had to be almost physically dragged into supporting the idea at all. In the midst of all this was a near-revolt from big-time Democratic donors (gay rights donors as well as wealthy Hollywood donors), which is what it took to finally get the Democratic Party to take the issue seriously at all. When the spigot of party donations was threatened, the party (and Obama) finally decided it had to take a real stand.

Hillary Clinton ran for president twice -- this year, and in 2008. In both instances, she actually campaigned as a pragmatic progressive, or "a progressive who can get things done." Freely translated, this meant: "Dream small!" It was exactly the same Hail Mary-versus-incrementalism position Obama just referenced, in fact. When forced to adopt some of the positions of Bernie Sanders, for instance, Clinton could not resist the urge to water them down considerably before she would even pretend to back them (such as settling for a $12-an-hour minimum wage, or making state college tuition free, but only for those families making a certain amount of money or less). Her entire campaign was an exercise in incrementalism, which failed to excite enough voters for her to win. Notably, she refused to even take a position on marijuana legalization, other than to timidly support tangential issues. Instead of leading on the issue, Clinton meekly called for "further study." Not exactly a bold stance, to put it mildly.

Just like gay marriage, full legalization of marijuana is still seen (by most Democratic officeholders) as some sort of "fringe position." It is not, but they haven't really noticed yet. Some Democrats can barely bring themselves to support medical marijuana, even though over half the states have now made it legal. While six in ten Americans believe marijuana should be just as legal (and as regulated) as alcohol, Democrats still cower in fear of voicing support for recreational legalization.

Legalization ballot initiatives don't have a perfect record of passing, but the trendline is pretty clear. To the best of my knowledge, four such ballot initiatives have failed, while nine have been successful. California tried first, but they put the referendum on a non-presidential-year ballot, and it failed. When Washington state and Colorado became the first two states to fully legalize, a very badly-written measure failed in Oregon. A ridiculously-biased (toward a permanent oligopoly) measure failed in Ohio a while back. And then this year, one more initiative failed, in Arizona.

So, out of the four failures, two were incredibly badly written, meaning they didn't get any support from marijuana reform advocacy groups. And in two out of the four states (California and Oregon), when the advocates tried again with a better-written measure, it passed. This means nine measures have now passed (Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, and the District of Columbia), leaving only two states which have tried but failed (Ohio's laughably biased attempt, and the defeat this year in Arizona). As noted, the trendline is pretty clear.

We have now reached a tipping point of sorts. Previously, only states which don't get much attention on the East Coast had legalized recreational marijuana. Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington only have only 23 members in the House (five percent of the total). But there are now 91 members of the House of Representatives who hail from states that have voted to legalize recreational marijuana. That is 21 percent of the House, or over one-fifth of the total. That's not as easy to dismiss as some sort of fringe phenomenon.

Consider the changes this election has brought. Marijuana legalization has gone from being a geographic issue in the West to adding two East Coast states. Marijuana tourism will now be easily accessible by train (where baggage doesn't get searched) for most of the rest of the East Coast. Out West, Nevada has now legalized recreational use, meaning Las Vegas just got another big incitement to draw tourists out into the desert. And California is the biggest marketplace for legal weed yet, seeing as how the state's economy is the sixth-largest in the world, when measured against other countries. The floodgates may not be fully open, but I don't think anyone's going to be able to close them back up again at this point.

That's not to say the attempt won't be made, however. This will provide Democrats an even bigger opening, politically. Jeff Sessions, the nominee to lead the Justice Department, is an old-style drug warrior. He seems to personally despise marijuana, meaning the fate of both medical marijuana and recreational legalization is very much up in the air right now. A major crackdown could be on the horizon, unless Donald Trump reins Sessions in on the subject (Trump doesn't personally seem all that invested in the issue, one way or another).

Politically, Democrats are much better positioned to emerge as the champions of legalization. Six of those states that have legalized are solid blue, after all. Two of them are somewhat purple states (Nevada is definitely still a swing state, although Colorado seems to be getting ever-bluer), and only one is a Republican stronghold (Alaska). In many of the referenda, the vote total for legalization has been higher than Democrats who ran for office managed to get, showing the crossover appeal the issue has.

Marijuana reform voters are somewhat like Second Amendment enthusiasts in one key way: a lot of them are single-issue voters. They'll accept candidates with wide-ranging stances on other issues, but any candidate who doesn't support these voters' key issue simply will not get their vote. It's also a big motivator -- a lot of single-issue voters never vote at all unless their key issue is part of the election in some way. Marijuana reform voters are notable in one further way as well -- the younger the voter, the more support for the issue exists.

One big shift in this political debate may also be about to happen. "Big Marijuana" now exists, and it's about to get exponentially bigger. With markets like California, Massachusetts, and Nevada opening up, there's going to be a lot more legal money made in this growing industry (pun intended). There are already numerous super PACs pushing for marijuana reform (such as the Marijuana Policy Project PAC), whose purpose is to funnel donor money to pro-legalization candidates. So far, this has only had a modest effect, but if the industry quadruples in a single year's time then there may be a lot more donations heading to these super PACs in the very near future. And more money, in politics, means more influence. As with the gay rights advocates, at some point this level of donorship is going to have to be squarely dealt with by the Democratic Party, or else they're going to start losing their lifeblood. Rather than donating directly to the party, entertainment figures (Bill Maher, I am looking in your direction...), superstar musicians, and Hollywood bigwigs might instead opt to donate towards pro-legalization candidates more directly.

Leaving aside the broader picture of the Democratic Party's current woes, Democrats need to rediscover what it is like to be strongly for some forward-looking political issues. Marijuana reform needs to be one of these issues, in a big way. By getting out in front and championing legalization, Democrats could bring some excitement to otherwise-dull elections, they could motivate young voters to actually show up at the polls, and they could stand on what is clearly the future of marijuana law instead of timidly supporting the failed policies of the past. They also might reap a huge financial reward, as money begins flowing in from an industry that has previously never been able to legally participate in the American political process.

Democrats need to reject incrementalism. They need to realize that not only do Hail Mary passes sometimes work, but also that such boldness can actually be rewarded by the voters (especially when opposed to "let's just lead from behind again"). New ideas are sometimes good ideas, especially when they have the ability to convince voters who normally wouldn't vote for you (or would stay home and just not vote) that your party is on the right side of history.

By cherry-picking a quote from that Rolling Stone interview, you can see a glimmer of what might have been, when Obama wistfully stated: "I do believe that treating this as a public-health issue, the same way we do with cigarettes or alcohol, is the much smarter way to deal with it." However, he then inaccurately claimed that his hands were completely tied by Congress and the D.E.A. (neither of which is actually true). But that cherry-picked quote is exactly what must eventually happen, and exactly what Democrats everywhere should be getting behind. Legalization of marijuana -- completely ending the federal War On Weed, and leaving the issue up to the states to regulate, just like alcohol -- is precisely what the voters are now demanding. Six in ten Americans now agree marijuana should be regulated just like alcohol, in fact. Sixty percent! The voters are already out there leading on the issue. The Democrats can either join them at the front of the parade, or they will be left behind.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Cross-posted at The Huffington Post

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

65 Comments on “Legalization's March Continues, With Or Without Democrats To Lead It”

  1. [1] 
    michale wrote:

    My only beef with the legalization issue is the claim that marijuana should be legalized because criminalizing it is too hard..

    That's a very slippery slope that can lead to a horrible horrible place...

    I have definitely changed my mind about medical marijuana but that was mostly due to personal family concerns...

    But legalizing recreational use??

    I am not quite there yet....

  2. [2] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    I couldn't decide whether to say you are grasping at stalks or if this issue being the issue to save the Democratic Party is just another pipe dream- so I used both.
    However, many of the statements you made are exactly the reason that the Voucher Vendetta approach of citizens demanding small contribution candidates is the one issue that can save our political process. If you want to save the Democratic Party then you should advocate for the Democratic party to get behind this approach.

    "When the spigot of party donations was threatened, the party (and Obama) finally decided it had to take a stand."
    "a lot of them are single issue voters. They'll accept candidates with wide-ranging stances on other issues, but any candidate who doesn't support these voters' key issue simply will not get their vote."
    "Democrats need to rediscover what is is like to be strongly for some forward-looking political issues."
    "New ideas are sometimes good ideas, especially when they have the ability to convince voters who normally wouldn't vote for you (or would stay home or just not vote) that your party is on the right side of history."

    It will not be a good thing if the legal weed industry grows big enough to become another Big Money donor source for the Democratic Party. The Big Money donors to both current major parties are the problem.
    The reason Bernie did well in the primaries was only only because he offered free tuition. It was because he ran a small contribution campaign and many citizens responded to a candidate that they felt would represent their interests because of this campaign financing model. It is the one issue that any candidate I vote for must support and commit to campaigning by.
    It is the same reason many people were fooled into supporting Trump with his claims of self-financing his campaign.
    80% of citizens including citizens of both current major parties, third parties and independents want the Big Money out of politics. 20% MORE than the 60% that support legalization of weed.
    And Voucher Vendetta can get all of these citizens to work together to influence all parties and candidates. The parties that respond will survive and thrive- those that don't respond will not.
    The Democratic Party can't be saved by repeating the mistakes it made in the past.
    Ignoring the one issue that can save our political process again while desperately searching for issues such as legalization or the minimum wage in your recent One Big Issue article that do nothing to address the biggest problem that the Democrats and our political process face will be repeating the same mistakes and will produce the same results.

  3. [3] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    oops.
    it should be "The reason Bernie did well in the primaries was NOT only because he offered free tuition."

  4. [4] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Michale-
    Think of it this way. Should the government have a right to tell a citizen what they can do in their own home that does no harm to anyone else ?

  5. [5] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    This country is stupid in the aggregate and reefer madness is about as stupid as it gets. I see no reason to believe that we'll go anywhere but backwards.

  6. [6] 
    michale wrote:

    Think of it this way. Should the government have a right to tell a citizen what they can do in their own home that does no harm to anyone else ?

    You mean, like drink a large heavily-laden sugar drink?? :D

    All things being equal, I would say 'no'...

    But I am against Nanny-State policies...

    On the other hand, when it comes to illegal drugs, it rarely is a victim-less crime...

  7. [7] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "When it comes to illegal drugs, it rarely is a victim-less crime"
    The article was not about all illegal drugs, it was about weed.
    Where is the victim if citizens can responsibly grow their own weed and/or buy it from a regulated legal source and use it in their own home ?

  8. [8] 
    neilm wrote:

    The concerns I have with making Marijuana the "big issue" for the Democrats are:

    i/ Support is a mile wide but an inch deep - e.g. most parents don't want their kids to use MJ while at the same time that don't want them busted for it either

    ii/ We are going thru a prescription drug induced horror show with heroin at the moment, and, while it isn't fair, MJ will be lumped into the heating up war on drugs

    iii/ This isn't a pocketbook issue - "Its the Economy Stupid" doesn't apply to MJ

  9. [9] 
    neilm wrote:

    The Democrats need a visceral issue to attack the Republicans with.

    There are a few that will become available now that the Republicans are responsible for everything:

    i/ Medical costs - these keep rising, even though they leveled off a bit due to Obamacare. Drug price increases, the rising revulsion towards Big Pharma for getting millions hooked on heroin, etc. will also play into this. If the Democrats can tie the Republicans to a failing healthcare system then they have a strong isue to run on

    ii/ What happened to the Manufacturing jobs? Trump has made lots of promises about this and is grandstanding over Carrier, but Carrier is a one off and the rust belt voters wanted somebody to change DC - fortunately for the Democrats Trump isn't draining the swamp, he is wallowing in it like a human Jabba the Hut.

    The danger with this is that those jobs are gone and aren't coming back, so the Democrats will only set themselves up for the same failure as Trump.

    iii/ Wage growth - without steps to significantly grow the incomes of the 90% - which Trump doesn't seem to have on his agenda at the moment - a concerted campaign to tie Trump and the Republicans to a "the Rich won again" message should be viable and popular.

  10. [10] 
    michale wrote:

    The article was not about all illegal drugs, it was about weed.

    According to federal law, marijuana is still an illegal drug...

    Where is the victim if citizens can responsibly grow their own weed and/or buy it from a regulated legal source and use it in their own home ?

    Where is the victim if citizens can responsibly cook their own methamphetamine and use it in their own home??

    You see what I mean by a slippery slope??

  11. [11] 
    dsws wrote:

    What this means is that either party could champion it now, leaving the other party desperately trying to turn the clock backwards.

    ... and succeeding, if they're the party in power. If this had become a partisan issue, with Democrats in favor of legalization, not even medical use would be legalized in any state.

  12. [12] 
    neilm wrote:

    Where is the victim if citizens can responsibly cook their own methamphetamine and use it in their own home??

    Alcohol is much more dangerous than weed. We should ban it too.

    You see what I mean by a slippery slope??

  13. [13] 
    michale wrote:

    ii/ What happened to the Manufacturing jobs?

    It is expected that the Left would let Trump been sworn into office BEFORE declaring all of Trump's policies to be a failure.. :D

    Trump has made lots of promises about this and is grandstanding over Carrier, but Carrier is a one off

    Says who???

  14. [14] 
    neilm wrote:

    And tobacco!

    You see what I mean by a slippery slope??

  15. [15] 
    neilm wrote:

    Says who???

    Well, that would be me. We haven't seen the details - how much did it cost the Indiana taxpayer? Or the Federal taxpayer? What threats were used? What promises made?

    Carrier didn't just decide to forego $68M/year because they like Trump's hairstyle. Even the most gullible fanboy knows there is a quid-pro-quo.

  16. [16] 
    neilm wrote:

    ... and succeeding, if they're the party in power. If this had become a partisan issue, with Democrats in favor of legalization, not even medical use would be legalized in any state.

    Very good point - weaponizing MJ is a sure fire way of stopping progress.

  17. [17] 
    neilm wrote:

    ii/ What happened to the Manufacturing jobs?

    It is expected that the Left would let Trump been sworn into office BEFORE declaring all of Trump's policies to be a failure.. :D

    You know me, Michale ;)

  18. [18] 
    michale wrote:

    Next up, the AT&T and Time Warner merger, which candidate Trump said he would block. BET founder Robert Johnson told CNBC yesterday that he met with Trump last week, and his sense is the President “is going to sit down and negotiate” that deal as well.
    -http://fortune.com/2016/11/30/donald-trump-carrier-deal-jobs/

    A President that actually DOES something...

    What a novel concept.... :D

    "One off" my left arse cheek!!! :D

  19. [19] 
    neilm wrote:

    "One off" my left arse cheek!!! :D

    What does blocking the ATT/Time Warner deal have to do with manufacturing jobs?

  20. [20] 
    michale wrote:

    What does blocking the ATT/Time Warner deal have to do with manufacturing jobs?

    Trump is going to sit down with them and hammer out a BETTER deal for employees that might be adversely affected by the merger..

    It's not just about making the shareholders richer, don'tcha know.. :D

  21. [21] 
    michale wrote:

    You know me, Michale ;)

    Touche'??

    Did you happen to see this??

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2016/11/28/a-post-truth-presidency/#comment-89574

  22. [22] 
    neilm wrote:

    Trump is going to sit down with them and hammer out a BETTER deal for employees that might be adversely affected by the merger..

    How do you know? I never saw anything about significant layoffs, especially not manufacturing jobs.

    I think the deal should be blocked because it will concentrate too much media power in one company, but there will need to be a good case made to stand up in court.

  23. [23] 
    neilm wrote:

    Neil,

    Regarding the gun issue, I had an idea today...

    How would you feel about a national Open Carry law that would require registration?? And I might even go so far as to accede to liability insurance as long as it's not overly onerous... IE that the goal is to provide for liability rather than making it too onerous so no one CAN carry...

    What you think??

    I'm fine with it. So long as all firearms are registered and there are lower insurance rates for people who opt out of open carry.

  24. [24] 
    michale wrote:

    How do you know? I never saw anything about significant layoffs, especially not manufacturing jobs.

    Jobs are jobs.. Doesn't have to be manufacturing jobs... At least, that's my take...

    But, regardless, I think it shows Trump being a hands on POTUS, especially in areas of business that he is well-versed in...

  25. [25] 
    neilm wrote:

    My point was about manufacturing jobs. We are basically at full employment at the moment (5%) but the whining is about the types of jobs - particularly for non-graduate men. Manufacturing jobs are a heuristic for well paid "manly" jobs that don't require a university degree.

  26. [26] 
    michale wrote:

    I'm fine with it. So long as all firearms are registered and there are lower insurance rates for people who opt out of open carry.

    Registering weapons that sit in safe is ridiculous and would violate the 2nd Amendment, IMNSHO.... I think the SCOTUS will rule this way, if a case ever makes it that far..

    The PERSON would be registered, not the weapon he or she chooses to carry...

    Having liability insurance for those weapons that sit in a safe or on display is also ridiculous..

    It would be like having liability insurance for a car that sits in a museum... Ridiculous....

    If you carry or drive, I can see where a liability insurance requirement is logical and rational..

    If you don't carry or drive, if you have your weapon or car in permanent display mode, liability insurance makes absolutely no sense..

    But rather than tie up another commentary with a gun debate, wanna move it back a few??? :D

  27. [27] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'm not going around and around on gun control again - we've bored everybody on that already.

  28. [28] 
    michale wrote:

    Troo... :D Hokay...

  29. [29] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Michale (10)-
    "According to federal law, marijuana is still an illegal drug..."
    Irrelevant. You are lumping it in with all drugs to avoid discussing marijuana specifically.
    It is also a ridiculous argument that because something is illegal that the fact that it is illegal is a reason for it to be illegal.
    "Where is the victim if a citizen can responsibly cook up meth?"
    See: "you are lumping it in..." above.
    Also: I know people that have had black labs, chocolate labs and golden labs, but none that have had meth labs. But I have heard that they can go boom. But other than that where is the victim ?
    Slippery slope is always a bullshit argument used by those advocating an indefensible position. Those that introduce the slippery slope are the ones that have already gone over the edge.
    As nielm demonstrated in comments 12 and 14 the slippery slope works the same both for and against your position.

  30. [30] 
    michale wrote:

    Irrelevant. You are lumping it in with all drugs to avoid discussing marijuana specifically.

    Until such time as the law changes across the land, it's an illegal drug...

    As nielm demonstrated in comments 12 and 14 the slippery slope works the same both for and against your position.

    Actually Neil applied the slippery slope to alcohol, not against my position..

    I am just a knuckle dragging ground pounder cop type guy... If something is illegal, there is usually a pretty good reason WHY it's illegal...

    If someone wants to make the argument that alcohol should be illegal, fine... That is an argument with some merit...

    Once the law gets around to being universally changed, that's great....

    But claiming it's a victim-less crime is not a valid argument. Because my own personal experiences lay lie to that claim...

    Yes, a person who smoked pot made it to be President of the United States..

    But does that President want his daughters smoking pot??

    Of course not..

    Why??

    Because it's a bad bad thing....

  31. [31] 
    neilm wrote:

    Does anybody else watch "Adam Ruins Everything"?

    Bloody hilarious, and well fact checked.

    Here is the reason MJ is illegal:

    http://www.trutv.com/shows/adam-ruins-everything/videos/the-sinister-reason-weed-is-illegal.html

  32. [32] 
    neilm wrote:

    BTW, check out the cop at the end of the A.R.E. clip (Michale, guess which character you are ;)

  33. [33] 
    michale wrote:

    (Michale, guess which character you are ;)

    Yep... That would be me! :D

    But it's funny... This guy goes on and on about marijuana is safe... He says that many MANY times.

    Yet, he ALSO admits the damage it causes in people under 25...

    So, which is it???

    Is it safe?? Or does it cause brain damage in kids and young adults??

  34. [34] 
    neilm wrote:

    Probably, like alcohol, it isn't a good idea for kids. Should be legal like alcohol for adults however.

    You should check out some of the other episodes.

  35. [35] 
    neilm wrote:

    Check out the D.A.R.E. episode.

  36. [36] 
    michale wrote:

    Yet, he ALSO admits the damage it causes in people under 25...

    So, here's my proposal...

    I'll support legalization of marijuana for anyone older than 25 years old...

    But keep in place harsh penalties for those caught with marijuana who are 25 or under and harsh penalties for those who sell to those 25 and under....

    Following the science, right??

    How popular do you think the legalization push would be THEN, eh?? :D

  37. [37] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    michale (30)-
    Repeating the debunked argument that it should be illegal because it is illegal has convinced me!
    Oh wait- that only works on me on the sixth Thursday of any given month.
    But your failure to provide any victim, provide the reason why it should be illegal or actually address my points has convinced me.
    Oh wait- that only works on me on the sixth Thursday of any given month.

  38. [38] 
    michale wrote:

    Repeating the debunked argument that it should be illegal because it is illegal has convinced me!

    I never said that...

    I said that, as the person I am, it's illegal and that's all I need to know... If you had seen the results of this "victim-less" drug that I have, you would likely feel the same way..

    But your failure to provide any victim, provide the reason why it should be illegal or actually address my points has convinced me.

    Remember Dragnet???

    Oh wait- that only works on me on the sixth Thursday of any given month.

    I don't care if it's yer time of the month or not.. :D

  39. [39] 
    michale wrote:

    Don,

    But as I said.. I would support recreational legalization for those older than 25....

  40. [40] 
    michale wrote:

    Because that's supported by the science..

    And we're all about the science here...

    Right?? :D

  41. [41] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'll go with the legalization for the same age as alcohol since both impact the developing brain.

    I'd also like to outlaw tobacco completely.

    Agreed?

  42. [42] 
    neilm wrote:

    Oh, and the laws for selling MJ and alcohol to minors must be the same. Giving a 20 year old a Bud should have the same penalty regardless of what type of Bud ;)

  43. [43] 
    michale wrote:
  44. [44] 
    michale wrote:

    Oh, and the laws for selling MJ and alcohol to minors must be the same.

    To the best of my knowledge MJ causes damage in developing brains much worse than alcohol..

    Therefore the penalty should be greater...

  45. [45] 
    michale wrote:

    I'd also like to outlaw tobacco completely.

    Agreed?

    oh yea... DEFINITELY!

  46. [46] 
    michale wrote:

    “Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences. It’s not going to happen.”
    -President-Elect Donald Trump

    Ooorrraaaaaaa!!

  47. [47] 
    neilm wrote:

    To the best of my knowledge MJ causes damage in developing brains much worse than alcohol..

    Neither is proven worse than the other.

  48. [48] 
    neilm wrote:

    I've been reading up on Matts and I like him. He isn't the clown his quotes make him out to be, plus he admits he runs his mouth off. He'll be good.

  49. [49] 
    neilm wrote:

    Flynn is another story. He's all gut and too little brain.

  50. [50] 
    michale wrote:

    I've been reading up on Matts and I like him. He isn't the clown his quotes make him out to be, plus he admits he runs his mouth off. He'll be good.

    Common ground!! :D

    Flynn is another story. He's all gut and too little brain.

    I have to admit that I am not a big Flynn fan..

    Hopefully Trump will keep him grounded.. :D

    heh

  51. [51] 
    neilm wrote:

    So is Trump going to Pakistan or not?

    He really need a Diplomacy 101 class fast.

  52. [52] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    Mattis gets my vote...He is a good man and should perform well if and this is a big IF ... Congress listens to him and doesn't force obsolete weapons platforms on him.

    Now Flynn on the other hand I do not want anywhere near our government... It does not sit well with me that he is a regular mouthpiece on RT and his convictions change with the pay coming in from his clients.

  53. [53] 
    neilm wrote:
  54. [54] 
    neilm wrote:

    Surely Trump can't be stupid enough to allow congress to vote for "Repeal and Delay" (of Obamacare)?

    Insurance companies are going to hightail it leaving Trump with no legislation and millions of furious Americans.

    There is no delay. Without a strong commitment to Obamacare in its present form it will fall apart in late 2017 as many insurers drop out of 2018 markets.

  55. [55] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Big Money horning in on the business is negative.
    The idea that Dems should be chasing their donations is misguided.
    MJ was criminalized unjustly, and it shouldn't be legalized for the wrong reasons.

    Politicians would be better off championing the ides of lots of small growers, and fighting for home growers rights... you mentioned Ohio, but increasing regulation to achieve the same effect is a real threat everywhere and is occurring.

    Credibility is the currency worth chasing.
    The morality of the new approach, and lack thereof in the current policy should be coupled with the same morality distinctions we see between home grown or farmers market tomato's and the bland red things they sell in grocery stores. A politician cheering for a grocery store tomato isn't credible.

    Your talk of PAC money is missing the boat... those taking it should be doubted.
    You're railing on Obama and Hillary while actually embracing what sunk Hillary.

    A

  56. [56] 
    neilm wrote:

    "One off" my left arse cheek!!! :D

    We are starting to get some of the details. A $7M tax break.

    You really think Trump is going to offer every company that announces they are moving jobs to Mexico a tax relief package?

    This, by the way, is what Trump ridiculed state governments for earlier this year.

  57. [57] 
    michale wrote:

    There is no delay. Without a strong commitment to Obamacare in its present form it will fall apart in late 2017 as many insurers drop out of 2018 markets.

    Uhh.. Insurers are already dropping out of TrainWreckCare in droves..

  58. [58] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    On "Mad Dog" - one small problem: there's a law that says that he can't have the job without an act of congress to waiver it. The only time that Congress ever did that (for Gen. George Marshall, because of the Marshall Plan, which was still very much an ongoing thing back then), the writers of the bill included a 'signing statement' that said that a waiver of that sort should never happen again.

    As for Carrier, it seems that despite Trump's and Pence's (mostly Pense's) best efforts, Carrier is still shutting down a plant in Indiana, and sending 1400 jobs to Mexico. So Trump is now taking credit for something he didn't do (like he does when he slaps his name on hotels that he didn't build), that didn't even do what he (and Pence) said it did. Just tens of thousands of dollars to a company that essentially shipped a bunch of jobs to Mexico anyway.
    If Trump wants to really save jobs, he could save a bunch by moving all of his branded products currently being made in other countries back to this country, while he's still personally in charge of his own company.

  59. [59] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Insurers are already dropping out of TrainWreckCare in droves..

    Sure they are. Think about who the Affordable Care Act is designed to curb: insurance companies, medical equipment suppliers, pharmaceutical companies and privately owned Hospitals, each guilty of having hiked prices and reduced services (and of gaming the system) to serve their bottom lines, which collectively drives the upward spiral in Health care costs. Great for stock prices, lousy for consumers.

  60. [60] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Re: Pot

    Obama could remove marijuana from the list of drugs subject to federal control with a stroke of his pen. His timidity on this issue hasn't been the high point of his administration.

    And if he had real balls, he'd delay the Supreme Court fight for another year by making a recess appointment of Garland to the Court when Congress takes its obligatory recess later this month. It would spark outrage on the Right, but really, who cares, other than news anchors I don't watch?

  61. [61] 
    michale wrote:

    On "Mad Dog" - one small problem: there's a law that says that he can't have the job without an act of congress to waiver it. The only time that Congress ever did that (for Gen. George Marshall, because of the Marshall Plan, which was still very much an ongoing thing back then), the writers of the bill included a 'signing statement' that said that a waiver of that sort should never happen again.

    The GOP owns Congress...

    The waiver will be issued...

    <I.So Trump is now taking credit for something he didn't do (like he does when he slaps his name on hotels that he didn't build), that didn't even do what he (and Pence) said it did. Just tens of thousands of dollars to a company that essentially shipped a bunch of jobs to Mexico anyway.

    Yet, all the Carrier leadership, all the Carrier employees whose jobs were saved, everyone knows that Trump DID do something.. Maybe not EVERYTHING but Trump surely accomplished something that Hillary NEVER would have done..

    Actually saved some jobs...

    Would Hillary had gone to Carrier and made the deal???

    No...

    No matter how much you deny it, Trump done did a good thing...

    053

  62. [62] 
    michale wrote:

    I don't know why ya'all are so worried about Trump's appointments??

    All the Democrats have to do is filibuster Trump's nominees and they will never see office...

    Oh... Wait..... :D

    I said at the time that Democrats would regret some day getting rid of the filibuster for nominees...

    Looks like today is that day....

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/democrats-send-their-regrets-1480638965

    055

  63. [63] 
    michale wrote:

    With Carrier coup, Donald Trump offers a window into his presidency

    President-elect Donald Trump is sending a direct and simple message: “America is back in business.”
    Weeks before even taking the oath of office, Mr. Trump on Thursday struck a deal with Carrier Corp. to keep 1,000 manufacturing jobs in Indiana that the company had planned to move to Mexico. During the Obama administration, there were more stories about jobs leaving the United States than those that were staying.
    Mr. Trump’s determination to personally woo American businesses to stay put and re-energize the American economy could become the cornerstone of his time in office. The Trump-Carrier deal is a positive step in preserving jobs in America and encouraging a healthy dialogue between companies and the government. It’s about figuring out the incentives that motivate companies to stay. And what we are learning is that with Mr. Trump, this is not just a one-time offer but a “package deal” where companies will find a business-friendly environment, actively nurtured by the government, that leads them naturally to invest in American workers.

    -http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/dec/1/carrier-coup-show-how-trump-will-lead/

    I see Trump re-elected in 2020 with 70% of the popular vote and the biggest landslide since Reagan.... :D

  64. [64] 
    michale wrote:

    http://www.salon.com/2016/12/01/calling-jeff-sessions-racist-conveniently-ignores-the-work-hes-done-for-alabamas-black-community/

    A SALON commentary in SUPPORT of Attorney General Sessions???

    The Trump Effect!! It's gotta be!! :D

    057

  65. [65] 
    altohone wrote:

    Troll
    63

    I could have sworn that you admitted in the Ford discussion that incentives and tax breaks to subsidize keeping jobs in the US would mean Trump was not worthy of praise... are you flip flopping already?

    Purchased corporate "loyalty" isn't actual loyalty or American greatness.

    A

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