WASHINGTON, DC — Tennessee Representative Steve Cohen took an opportunity Wednesday to grill Attorney General Eric Holder about the ongoing prosecutions of marijuana offenses in the United States, even in states that have liberalized marijuana laws.
During the Wednesday House oversight committee hearing focusing on the recent AP phone log scandal, Rep. Cohen (D-Tennessee) tore into AG Holder, calling marijuana prohibition an “injustice for 40 years” and demanding to know why the Department of Justice is continuing to put people in jail for marijuana:
One of the greatest threats to liberty has been the government taking people’s liberty for things that people are in favor of. The Pew Research Group shows that 52 percent of people do not think marijuana should be illegal. And yet there are people in jail, and your Justice Department is continuing to put people in jail, for sale, and use, on occasion, of marijuana. That’s something the American public has finally caught up with. It was a cultural lag. And it’s been an injustice for 40 years in this country to take people’s liberty for something that was similar to alcohol. You have continued what is allowing the Mexican cartels power, and the power to make money, ruin Mexico, hurt our country by having a Prohibition in the late 20th and 21st century. We saw it didn’t work in this country in the 20s. We remedied it. This is the time to remedy this Prohibition, and I would hope you would do so.
Watch the video here.