Obama pulled back the federal war on drugs. Trump and Sessions are undoing that work.
President Donald Trump’s administration over the past year has largely been consumed by scandals, tweets, immigration restrictions, a failed effort to repeal Obamacare, and the recently enacted Republican tax plan.
But in between all these issues and the media coverage surrounding them, the administration has proven adept at getting things done on a topic that’s received much less attention: the war on drugs.
Since taking the reins last year, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has used his position at the US Department of Justice to re-escalate anti-drug policies that had been pulled back by his predecessors during President Barack Obama’s time in office. Individually, many of these moves may have seemed small. But over the past year, they have built up to what one drug policy reform advocate characterized as a “creeping escalation of the war on drugs.”
“During his nomination, we warned that if [Sessions] were to be confirmed, he would pursue a hardline agenda,” Grant Smith, deputy director of national affairs at the Drug Policy Alliance, told me. Smith argued that’s exactly what’s happened, citing Sessions’s actions in the past year: “It is a methodical escalation of the war on drugs by Attorney General Sessions.”
Those on the other side of these issues agree that the Trump administration has been successful in pursuing its “tough on drugs” agenda. Sessions “has remained focused, has remained diligent in his endeavors,” Jonathan Thompson, executive director of the National Sheriffs Association, told me. “We’re pleased with the attorney general’s activities and actions thus far. We think he recognizes the reality of the world we’re in today.”
The latest example came when Sessions on Thursday pulled back Obama-era policies that allowed states to legalize pot — as it remained illegal at the federal level Read More Here