Rep. Blumenauer and Drug Policy Reformers Support Democratic Platform Language

OCC Staff

July 7, 2016


We received this message from Oregon Congressman Earl Blumenauers office today. The DNC platform is evolving, and the plank on drug policy has moved to the left! Thanks in no small part to efforts of Congressmen like Earl Blumenauer, Jared Polis, Dana Rohrabacher, and Senator Bernie Sanders, the popular 2016 presidential candidate, who ran on a platform of legalizing cannabis.

Though much success has been made, it’s important to recognize that the Democratic Party is the only major party to adopt a progressive drug policy plank. The Republican Party will have its hands full this year trying to deal with a Trump candidacy, and will unlikely take a progressive stance on many issues, let alone drug policy.


Blumenauer at NORML Portland Conference
Rep. Earl Blumenauer addressing the media at the 2010 NORML National Conference in Portland. Image: Keith Mansur, OCC Newspaper.

From Nicole L’Esperance:

Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), the leading champion of marijuana legalization in Congress, and national drug policy reform organizations sent a letter to Democratic National Committee Platform Committee Members in support of the draft Democratic Platform language on marijuana policy. In their letter, the leaders also urged Committee members to make the Party’s position on marijuana policy even stronger by adding the following statement to the Platform position: “We support ending the failed federal marijuana prohibition.”

The letter is signed by Congressman Earl Blumenauer, Clergy for a New Drug Policy, Doctors for Cannabis Regulation, Drug Policy Action, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, Marijuana Policy Project, National Cannabis Industry Association, NORML, and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.

The full text of the letter is included below, and an electronic version of the letter can be found here.

Rep. Blumenauer and Drug Policy Reformers Support Democratic Platform Language

July 7, 2016

The Honorable Shirley Franklin

The Honorable Dannel Malloy

Co-Chairs of the Platform Committee

Democratic National Committee

430 South Capitol St. SE

Washington, DC 20003


Dear Governor Malloy, Ms. Franklin, and Members of the Platform Committee:


First, thank you for your Committee’s leadership and unanimous support of the DNC Platform

Amendment recognizing the need to change our nation’s outdated marijuana laws. This is an

important step for the Democratic Party to take, and we appreciate the inclusion of this topic in

the Draft Platform language.


We have been working in Congress and across the nation to end the failed prohibition on

marijuana. A majority of Americans agree: according to a 2015 Gallup poll, 58 percent of

Americans now support legalization of cannabis for adult use, showing that public support

continues to grow. We are encouraged to see that the DNC Platform Committee’s marijuana

amendment reflects the views of the nation and the Democratic Party.


With the addition of Pennsylvania and Ohio recently, now more than half of Americans (54

percent) live in a state with legal access to medical marijuana. As many as eight additional states

will be voting this November to expand access to marijuana in their states. The federal

government needs to do more than just allow states to be the laboratories of democracy when it

comes to marijuana – we must actively acknowledge that prohibition has failed and pass the

policies to reflect that change. In light of this, we also suggest a meaningful, but not substantive,

addition to the beginning of the statement on marijuana: We support ending the failed federal

marijuana prohibition.


There is bipartisan support for marijuana research, banking and tax reforms in Congress, but

Democrats must be united in leading the charge for reforming our outdated marijuana laws. We

applaud you for your leadership to pass this amendment to recognize the views shared by a

majority of Americans in making this addition to the DNC Platform.


Thank you for your service developing the DNC Platform in this historic year.



Earl Blumenauer

Member of Congress

Third District of Oregon


Clergy for a New Drug Policy

Doctors for Cannabis Regulation

Drug Policy Action

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

Marijuana Policy Project

National Cannabis Industry Association


Students for Sensible Drug Policy


OCC Staff

Oregon Cannabis Connections capable staff or contributors. Contributors names will be noted., covering the Oregon Cannabis Community and beyond, since 2010!

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