When we broke down what Donald Trump’s presidency could mean for the legalization movement’s building momentum, we noted that his rumored attorney general picks, Rudy Giuliani and Chris Christie, are both staunchy anti-legalization. Ted Cruz, later rumored to be a frontrunner, seemed like a better choice.
But, according to the New York Times, Trump has made a worse pick than all of the above: Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, who endorsed Trump early in his campaign and has kept marijuana in Alabama illegal. Civilized described Sessions’ pot views best: he’s “so backward on marijuana reform, he doesn’t even want people talking about it.”
“You can’t have the President of the United States of America talking about marijuana,” Sessions said during a Senate meeting last March. “You are sending a message to young people that there is no danger in this process. It is false that marijuana use doesn’t lead people to more drug use. It is already causing a disturbance in the States that have made it legal.”
Earlier this year, Sessions went so far as to question the moral character of cannabis consumers (via The Weed Blog):
Caucus member Jeff Sessions (R.-Al.) spoke of the need to foster ”knowledge that this drug is dangerous, you cannot play with it, it is not funny, it’s not something to laugh about… and to send that message with clarity that good people don’t smoke marijuana.”
Most disturbing, for a number of reasons, the least of which might be the weed jab, is a comment Sessions once made to former assistant US attorney Thomas Figures, who is black. Sessions said he thought the KKK was “okay until I found out they smoked pot.” He later dismissed it as a joke.
The legalization movement’s best hope, it seems, is for Sessions to align himself with Trump’s view that, despite what the federal government may say, marijuana legalization should be left up to the states.