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Reactions To The Expected Resignation Of DEA Administrator

drug enforcement agency dea

(via Wikipedia.com)

Yesterday news broke that the Chief of the DEA, Michele Leonhart, would be stepping down soon. Michele Leonhart’s ‘retirement’ comes after a series of scandals that have occurred within the DEA, which culminated in a statement of ‘no confidence’ by a Congressional Committee. The Committee issued the statement after it held a hearing in regards to the handling of a sex party scandal that involved DEA agents and prostitutes in Columbia that were paid for by cartels. United States Representative Earl Blumenauer had the following to say:

“Following the official resignation of Ms. Leonhart as head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, I encourage the President to use this as an opportunity to fill this important role with someone who understands the outdated federal approach to marijuana isn’t working. The American public has moved on. Most now feel marijuana should be legalized. Four states and the District of Columbia have legalized the adult use of marijuana, and more than two-thirds of Americans live in a state that has legalized some form of medical marijuana. The President himself has said we have bigger fish to fry than going after state-legal marijuana users. I would urge him to put in place a DEA Administrator who will reflect his Administration’s position and can be a partner in creating a more workable system of marijuana laws.”

When news broke of the story, anti-marijuana crusader Kevin Sabet had the following to say, via Twitter (thanks to Tom Angell for getting a picture of the tweet!):

kevin sabet tweet dea

Of course, it didn’t take long for Kevin Sabet to be proven wrong, as virtually every major media outlet on the planet covered the story. Michele Leonhart is indeed stepping down, and Kevin Sabet doesn’t know what he’s talking about, which shocked no one of course. Tom Angell took the opportunity to nominate Neill Franklin on Twitter as the next head of the DEA. Neill Franklin of course is the Executive Director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, and is one of my heroes. Neill responded with the following on Twitter:

Dan Riffle from the Marijuana Policy Project had quite possibly my favorite tweet of the day, which can be seen below:

Mr. Riffle always has insightful things to say. I’m curious to see where things go from here. The DEA is a complete waste of money, and does so much more harm than good that it’s hard to put into words. I hope this is a turning point in federal drug enforcement policy. The drug war has failed, the DEA has failed, and it’s beyond time for a federal drug policy paradigm shift.


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Johnny Green


  1. Federal cops are needed to tend to interstate and international commerce crimes. I could do without the D.E.A., for the most part as I stated, provided real regulation and taxation were occurring.
    R&T isn’t happening, hard drug [cocaine, heroin, meth, ketamine, Oxycontin {and all other man made prescription narcotics}, etc (marijuana or naturally occurring hallucinogens don’t fall under this category)] dealers are dangerous [I use to associate with many of them and know first hand they aren’t the nicest of folks], and they need supervision if we aren’t going to kill their businesses by making their products legal.

  2. If you truly believe that we American adults need law enforcement to control what we put inside our own bodies, don’t worry, there are state, and local cops for that. But why do we need federal cops in our neighborhoods busting people for petty drug offenses?

  3. Please OBWAN do not chose “Bernard Bailey Kerik” — known as Bernie Kerik, or Ray Kelly for this position. Kelly is responsible for all the “Stop and Frisk” nonsense in NYC and he still has strong political allies in D.C. Kelly is on the short list for DHS. Kerik is just a plain out crook, and did Fed time for it. Yet their voices are still echoing with the talking head media. I understand that their names have been floated.
    I’ll go with Major N. Franklin. At least he knows the real deal and his knowledge comes from bottom up experience.
    But with our luck we’ll get Kevin Sabet, which I still think is Leonhart in drag. IMHO

  4. I beg to differ. Meth, crack, poorly produced LSD, unpure ecstasy does not benefit society in any fashion and should be removed from the market place.
    However, I would be game for legalizing and regulating [creating a base standard that each drug must reach to make it to market] every drug and taxing it just as we do cigarettes and alcohol and completely removing the D.E.A.
    If that is what you are suggesting I am all for it, but I am not for the wild wild west version of a free drug market.

  5. It only took an act of god to get her out. The question now becomes how much political capital does Obama spend to get someone in who has their head screwed on correctly?

    I am willing to bet he balks at any candidate that is ready to make a real change in prosecution policy or rescheduling, even though he will have an interview that suggests otherwise.

  6. Sabet and Leonhart should go on Tour together.

    Two painted phonies that go up and down, both captured on parallels of a time long gone by.

    They can call it the “Magical Mystery Tour” and promote it as a comedy act

    I am all for Maj. Franklin to take the helm of the DEA. At least he knows where the priorities lie. To be treated as a health issue and a criminal issue, unless it involves the major cartel players (like in meth and heroin, etc).
    But please Mr.Obama don’t even consider Bernie Kerik. “Please”.
    Also I still think that Sabet is Leonhart in drag.

  7. Eventually, people will understand Kevin would never do his job for free, which is the biggest difference between him and 99.99% of the people who advocate to reform our cannabis laws and end the drug war. We do what we do because we believe in it. He does what he does for a paycheck.

  8. Dan Riffle has the right idea. The sad thing is that with 15,000 deaths each year due to prescription painkillers, there actually *is* a legitimate need for an agency tasked to keep people safe from drugs that can do them harm. Pity the monstrous thing we call the DEA in no way accomplishes that goal.

    The 15k annual deaths statistic has been steadily increasing since the 1990s. Coincidentally, since the 1990s, the DEA has approved a 1200% increase in the volume of opiate painkillers produced in the United States. One would think an agency tasked with keeping Americans safe from HARMFUL drugs would have done something else — anything else! That’s because the DEA was not founded to protect Americans. It was founded by Richard Nixon to target his political rivals (liberals, minorities, war protesters); to criminalize innocent people, not keep them safe. That’s why the DEA keeps hiring sadists, sociopaths, and perverts to, ehem, “enforce federal law.”

    As it stands, the DEA is a taxpayer-funded domestic terrorist cell that WE pay $2.6 billion each year. We pay for the privilege of being terrorized in our own country.

  9. Bureaucracies are harder to kill than threading a needle on the back of a bronking bull. This one has been a magnet for all types of bubbas. Neil Franklin would be a wonderful choice.

  10. I too feel that Neill Franklin should be considered as a replacement for the head of the DEA.

  11. Sorry, Kevin, she’s “resigning” under a lot of pressure from above. Of course, she will use that opportunity to make endless anti-drug speeches for large fees, just like you.

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