President Obama’s recent comments about marijuana didn’t quite call for the legalization of recreational use, the White House clarified. In a recent interview with The New Yorker, the president made comments that some interpreted as a policy shift on the issue.
While President Obama encouraged the legalization “experiments” in Colorado and Washington to move forward, “he’s not endorsing a specific move by a state,” press secretary Jay Carney explained during the daily briefing on Wednesday. Instead, the president stands by his belief about the negative impact of marijuana, although he supports changes regarding prosecution and sentencing over drug laws.
In The New Yorker, the president described smoking marijuana as no “more dangerous than alcohol” or tobacco cigarettes; he also called it “a bad habit,” “a vice,” and “a waste of time,” and has discouraged his daughters from smoking it.