tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN February 20, 2015 2:00pm-4:01pm EST
as one must question. i understand that the justice department will file by monday. is that is denied, what would be the next step for the ministers and? how desperate would you be? >> i do not want to assume that the rejection of a legal to moni and document that has not yet been filed. i'm sure we will have board time to talk with us next week. the thing you should remember, and terms of this day, it will be filed at the latest on monday. the u.s. government will be reviewing the decision. that is because we continue to believe that there is a solid legal foundation for the steps that the president has taken to bring some accountability to our broken immigration system. another couple points. the ruling did prevents the
federal government from issuing work permits and requiring state agencies to issue driver's license. i understand that this is a ruling that some republicans have cheered. the fact of the matter is that those steps are exactly the kind assess their required to bring millions of people out of the shadows, to make them cement to a background check, to make them pay taxes, to make them get right with the law. it is surprising to me that that kind of accountability is something that republicans would oppose. not to speak of the economic benefits that would be associated with these individuals actually paying taxes. the second thing is the court ruling does not ask a touch the ability of this administration to make decisions about discretion. one element of the president's proposed reforms was to ensure that our enforcement activities
were focused on the islands and not families. that we believe in these efforts should be focused on rounding up and deporting individuals who have a criminal history individuals that pose a national threat of some kind, or individuals that pose some kind of threat to the committees and their living. what we should not be doing is using those very important enforcement resources to focus on separating families. frankly, we need to be focused on the public safety risk out there. that is why the dhs can provide easement -- provide these metrics. what we are seeing is an increasing percentage of deportation of individuals with a criminal history. that is an indication that our efforts are improving on the scale. and thanks to the efforts of the president and his and menstruation to exercise, we
will continue to see that metric improved. that will mean safer communities for everybody. bill. rex back to cyber security and hackings. yesterday, three months after the state department -- last fall, you announced that there had been coverage in the white house system, are they still there? >> the update that have for you on the incident here the white house. we have taken appropriate steps to address the activity and protect our system. although we have addressed this particular incident, we are mindful of the fact that networks of the white house will continue to be imparted. we will continue to monitor our networks for concern. over the intrusion, our commun computer system was not
damaged. that is something that starts about before. we have restored the vast majority of services that were taken off-line during this mitigation efforts, and are continuing to take additional steps to bolster our differences. we also focus on longer-term efforts to defend broadband initiatives, that will further protect us. rights are you saying there have been no further intrusions in the white house system? >> i'm saying is that we've taken appropriate steps to address this activity as discussed last fall. and we are taking the specific steps to protect the spirit >> so you're not saying that there have been no further intrusions? >> im thing as much of a can. we are certainly monitoring the situation. and the same way that we
monitored reported breaches of computer systems that affect u.s. agent's, u.s. infrastructures. we note that the department of has been working closely with a variety of government agencies including the fbi, on comprehensive investigation and a specific response to the intrusion that is taking place over there. now, work is ongoing. scott. >> a question on the awkward partnership with countries and abilities that contribute to the grievance that this president talks about. he talked specifically about this last month. he had just given a speech in india's talking about women's rights, and then he headed to saudi arabia. he said, sometimes we have to balance our needs and speak to human rights with our immediate concerns in terms of terrorism -- countering terrorism.
my question is if the president is comfortable with the balance that is he worried that our immediate securities concerns may be laying aside. >> scott, i think this is something that is evaluated on the field basis. i think the united states continues to be a began liberty and stance of the vanguard of basic human rights. that is embodied in the fact that the president, when standing before these world leaders, brought it up. no one asked him a question in the context of yesterday's summit. he brought it up and proactively at about the need for countries to live up to their requirement. that they respect and protect the university human rights of their citizens. the president did that for a variety of reasons. first, it is consistent with our values. second, as he explained, it is consistent with the steps that people around -- countries
around the world can take. as countries enhance human rights it can counterterrorism. the president has been forthright about the need to balance all those concerns. there are countries that do not have the kind of human rights record that we would want them to have, but continued to be good partners for the united states in ways that are advantageous for national security. there is -- these are public it issues. once there are constantly undervaluation here. the president seriousness about these issues, and about speaking up and out about human rights, both associate because of the value associated with their and the value has to our national security, is consistent with the decision to raise it proactively at yesterday's summit. fred.
>> a couple of things. first, with their winter meeting today. does the white house any comment regarding the controversial forward on florida politician who said they were willing to change her position on medical marijuana. >> i'm not aware of that. i would refer you to be congressperson's office. i did not see the report. i will have to look at it. apologies. >> another question. on minimum wage. you talked about that. the walmart situation. isn't there and a an argument to be made that walmart is doing is voluntarily, and that there may not be a need for the government to put the mandate?
quite as it is certainly one argument. executives at walmart certainly have a strong track record about the business decisions that will enhance their bottom line. what these executives concluded is that offering more flexible scheduling policies to their workers and raising their wages was good for their bottom line and good for their business. the reason i think it is notable is because the republicans excuse for not raising minimum wage is that it is bad for business. i think this is the reason that we hold of this example we have other private sector companies have also sought to raise their workers wages. they find is good for business. they find it is good for their bottom line. we think everyone should benefit. >> all businesses, though? legs again, this is something that when you look at the macroeconomic impact, and the
individual scenes of businesses, they have found is good for the bottom line. there are number of small businesses that we uphold up have held up as doing the right thing. i'm confident that this is owners, they are not motivated solely by charity. they are motivated by profit. they do believe that this is good for the bottom line. that it allows them to do a better job of retaining their workers, which cut down on training costs. it also inspires greater loyalty among the workforce. that is a good thing. again, this can take a variety of forms. it can be as simple as increasing the pay other paycheck. it can also take the form of offering up a paid sick leave or policy that allows for flexible work schedule. these are the kinds of things that will make a real difference in the lives of middle-class families. that is why the president is advocating putting in place these policies across the
country, not just in a few select locations where they have decided take action. mark. another birthday boy. happy birthday. quite's is there a birthday interview with the president program? [laughter] >> if so it seems like it would be a lot of radio reporters interviewing the president today. between you and mark, and one of your colleagues at serious xm. something in the water at, i guess. >> some of yesterday's trip to chicago. will that be build out as political travel? >> i do not believe so. the president was using some of his official authority to travel to chicago and designate fulminant park as a national monument. quite he gave remarks that were
totally partisan. doesn't that qualify as political travel? >> i would have to check with the attorneys. i don't think so. it means it was a political stop, but the reason for the travel was to make this presidential announcement about these foam and national monument. >> are you required to the deck some of the taxpayer supported travel from political traveled? collects i can follow up with you. >> ok. one other question. did the president make any decision yesterday for the site of his presidential primary? >> the president has not made any decisions. he did have the opportunity to get a briefing, a little odd day, on the progress of the committee that has been formed to evaluate the proposals that and put forward by number of locations, including new york, and hawaii, and chicago. the president has not made any decisions yet. i think one way to you can tell
that it was not a decision-making meeting is because the first lady was not there. i can imagine that she would have them into on this discussion as well. when the decision has been reached, i'm sure you will be hearing about it. >> less than two hours of meetings. it seems like a lot of time to discuss the issue. >> i know that a lot of people who took part in the meeting were also friends of the president. my guess is that they are mixing business with pleasure. andrew. >> whiy it was there a response to military attacks in syria and libya, given the increasing number of tax? >> the u.s. condemned the
attacks in libya, and all the attacks on libya and the people living in the be a in recent months. we send our condolences to the people and families of the people of libya as they continue to fight back against terrorism. this latest terrorism attack underscores the need for all parties, including general national members to participate in the us-led dialogue, led by the u.n. secretary-general, to form government. those who are not purchasing -- the best way to counter these terrorists who are operating in libya is to help the libyan people build a national consensus that they need to fight these groups instead of each other. ultimately, that is what we are focused on. we have seen that violent extremists and terrorists have
sought to use instability in one country or another to establish a dictator. that is certainly what they of attempted to do in yemen. it is fairly what they had try doing in syria. that is why you've seen the united states take a pretty aggressive action in both places to counter their ability to establish a safe haven there. we are mindful, and had been for some time, on the ongoing insecurity and instability inside libya. we have been supportive of his you and let dialogue to try to bring some more stability to that situation. in doing so, it will enhance the ability of us in the government to provide for the security of the libyan people and ensure that radical extremists and terrorists are not able to use it as a safe haven. we are very mindful of the situation in libya. we obviously condemn, in the strong as possible terms
today's terrorist attack. it is a situation that we will continue to monitor. while we do that, we will continue to be supportive of the u.n. let dialogue. >> another one on ukraine. the russian backed rebels have broken the cease-fire. art moore sanctions now inevitable? >> the united states continues to be deeply troubled by ongoing military operations conducted by russian backed separatist in ukraine. that has continued despite russian backed commitment to a cease-fire. this is a commitment that they reaffirmed in the separate 12 -- in the february 12 plan. we call on all the signatories of the document to undertake the commitment from the plan. despite these aggressive
actions, we continue to support negotiated solution. at the same time, we've made clear that president vladimir putin has a choice. we've also made it crystal clear that the longer the putin regime continues to refuse to abide by the commitments of they made, the risk of higher cost will continue to increase. we have seen that the sanctions regime that is already in place only tightens as time goes by. as russia becomes further isolated, and what the union evaluate the climate in russia or the currency, or future projections of economic growth russia's taken a hit. that hit worsens as weeks and months go by. that is the status quo. the impact of the sanctions regime is having more of a bite. what is also possible is that there could be additional cost
over and above those increasing costs, it could be opposed. any sort of decision like that would be made in court nation with our allies in europe. we value the kind of close cooperation that we've gotten so far from our allies over there. that cooperation will continue in an effort to maximize the effort of these costs. >> my question is -- the cease-fire has been broken 250 times. happy times do they have to break it for you to say, we are not think about it anymore, we will implement sanctions. >> that is a legitimate question. as we see russia failed to live up to the commitments, and the president of russia in particular. it does put them at risk of facing even higher cost. the question has always been the question i got in this room before has always been at what point does the cost become sufficiently high that russia
and president putin about a week the strategy of his country's actions and eastern ukraine? that is something that we will continue to watch. if the president determines position with our allies in europe that additional things and are needed an additional caution be imposed, we will act accordingly. >> going back to the muscle attacks -- mosul attacks. >> i explained to alexis, i'm not aware of all the background briefings there are conducted on a daily basis across the government. christ was there any effort to make coalition partners are aware that they would be to operational details of the attack? >> again, not in a position to say that the details that they discussed were accurate. there is a lot of intensive
international coordination that goes on there. you will recall that when the president went last fall, he met with representatives from other countries that are integrated with the efforts. we take very seriously, and i know the department defense takes a seriously, the responsibility that they have. to coordinate with our partners and allies are part of this coalition. again, you would have to check with central command about whether or not incorporated these foreign representative either in that reefing, during the briefing, or in advance of it. >> and forming coalition partners on that? >> not necessarily. >> that they would be at the training site -- >> at again, i do not know that they were outed. [indiscernible]
it doesn't mean that qatar had announced it. this is a good segue to the week ahead. the president will host the i'm your cutter -- admir watar. jumping ahead. that meeting will happen on tuesday here at the white house. on monday, the president will meet with the national governors association. in the afternoon, he will but is that the in a credential ceremony in the oval office. at this event, the president will receive credentials from foreign investors recently posted in washington. the president -- presentation of credentials is a formal ceremony. i mention, on tuesday, he will
have another meeting. i wednesday, the president will travel to miami, florida diversity in a town hall meeting hosted by telemundo. of on thursday, the president will -- attend meetings at the white house. that evening, the president and the first lady will host an event on black history month. later in the week, president cearley will visit the white house. the president will discuss a range of topics with the president of libya. with that, i hope you all have a tremendous weekend. thank you. >> will be get any calls from foreign leaders today russian mark?
>> there is a possibility of that. let me get through this. what i was reminded of after our discussion of the top on wednesday is that the president a couple times, has been as this directly. the president himself has said that he tends to not comment on communications that he has had with foreign leaders. he has in the past acknowledged exchanging letters with leaders. as a set of wednesday, we do not have any new details to share with you. the one thing i will say that is contrary to some recent reports is that there has been no recent letter from either side. "broadly about our policy, our message both in private and public with iran has been consistent. the united states will not allow
iran to obtain a nuclear weapon and we oblige them to work with the international community. as you have also heard us say we brave concerns about iran's support of terrorism activities and destabilizing activities in the middle east. we often, and often in context of these letters have expressed concern about americans being held against their will or that are missing in iran. those are things that we've said publicly many times and are consistent with a private message that the president has conveyed to the extreme leader in letters that they have exchange. thanks, guys. >> we will have more on the obama administration policies tonight on c-span with a look at
the new approach to cuba and what it could mean for a u.s. cuban relations. we'll hear from supporters and opponents. here is some of the conversation that was hosted in fort lauderdale, florida. >> up until now, u.s. foreign policy toward cuba did not exist. it was u.s. policy for the elections. to get an electoral vote in new jersey and florida. and to get political contributions from wealthy cubans in new jersey and florida. that is what has determined u.s. foreign-policy and cuba until now. for the first time, there is for policy toward cuba. that is what obama is doing. he is taking the best interest of united states into account and not a rhetorical -- electro politics or contributions. the fact of the matter is that we will have to deal cuba because changes are coming. like i said before, there are
only two or three that still walk around, and at more than 85 years old. they cannot last much longer. you have a new generation that has taken over. if you take a look of the central committee of the copies party in cuba, almost 90% are over 50 years of age. >> we will be showing this entire form tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span. quite here are some of our featured programs for this week on the c-span networks. saturday morning starting at 10:00 a.m. eastern. live on c-span, our nation's governors get together to talk about issues affecting their states. sunday morning at 11:00. we continue our live coverage of the national governors association meeting.
on c-span 2 saturday, "book tv" is on the road. experiencing the little -- literary life of greensboro, north carolina as part of the 2015 season city store. on "afterwards" -- westmore. on "american history tv" on c-span 3, saturday night, after 7:00, the 1963 interview with malcolm x.. discussing race relations and opposition to racial integration. on sunday, joan amended is taught -- mendes tells the story of the kgb couple.
find our complete television schedule at c-span.org. let us know what you think about the programs you are watching. call us, 202-626-7305. join the c-span conversation -- like us on facebook, follow us on twitter. >> after legislation was passed that legalized recreational use of marijuana, inmate colorado the first state to do so. one year later, the panel looked at the impact of legalization with advice for other states passing similar laws. [applause] >> thank you all for being here. let me set a couple ground rules
and tell you what we will do tonight. first thing, if i can ask all of you to turn telephones offer put them on vibrate, that would be appreciated. we will introduce speakers and go in order. they will live at about a 15 minute presentation. we will then open the audience up to a q&a. i have a couple questions. one thing i ask of everyone here is that this is a hot topic and a controversial topic. notwithstanding the amendment that has been passed. if everyone would kindly be courteous with the questions and try to ask questions rather than pontificate, that would be appreciated as well. with that, let me get out of the way and introduced brian percent day -- here.
can you hear me? it's a real pleasure to be here. i am an attorney and i have been working for the past 10 years full time on marijuana issues in colorado. so a lot of what you see today i was definitely a large part of the effort to make that happen. we stand at a very interesting moment in time. for about 80 years or so marijuana was illegal. of course, we all lived through you know the war on drugs and the reagan administration in this is your brain on drugs and everything if between and now sort of turned this corner right. marijuana has really been legal in colorado for about two years but we only had legal recreational sales from stores for about a year. so i will be talking about what i think we have learned in the last couple of years. having said that, we are only a year or two in so we can sort of try to look into the future and talk about when happened the last year or so.
it is is certainly a just an interesting moment we are in. as such, it is sort of a confluence of two things. we have this long standing policy of marijuana being illegal. colorado voters by a 10% margin said no. in november 2012 we are going to make marijuana legal. we are not going to criminalize adults for using the substance and that is a massive policy shift. a large change in how our criminal justice system is set up and, of course, the ramifications for the approximately 900,000 people arrested every year in the country colorado at last and now several other states have adopted a different policy that doesn't criminalize hose people. that is one piece. the other people and we have a confluence. we didn't just legalize marijuana we created an opportunity for commerce. colorado legalized marijuana and then set up a tightly regulated system that that allows certain
types of businesses to sell, grow and produce this product. so it is kind of tough to think of any shift in time sort of polychange that has been set up in that way. i quick it is an interesting moment in time. -- >> it is an interesting moment in time. i want to talk about medical marijuana for a minute. the basis for our system in colorado is that we had medical marijuana since 2000. that helps us influence voters. when you are taught that marijuana that it is an evil substance and people have cancer, aids, and pain, you start to question if this policy makes sense. after 12 years or so, i think that influenced voters.
if they can work for this population, can it work for adults 21 and over. the movement we have seen on medical marijuana, the only comparable topic is gay marriage. the way attitudes have shifted in the past 20 years, massive shift on gay marriage. talk to anyone under 30, under 40, they are shocked that anyone would consider gay marriage immoral. the move state-by-state, the same thing with medical marijuana. 23 states have medical marijuana . four states have legalized marijuana for 21 and over. large shifts. if you look at polling among younger voters, marijuana and gay marriage track together. when you talk to younger voters they think you should tax this
product. they think you should not arrest people for marijuana and put them in jail. what happened in november 2012 in colorado, basically, by about a 10% margin, voters voted to do three things. again, never been done in history. colorado is leading the way. the y devoted to set up this system. sales, production, and growth. i can talk a bit more about that. the second piece is they allowed adults 21 and over to possess and cult about -- and cultivate small amounts of marijuana. we also legalized hemp production. it has very small amounts of thc, which is they component that makes you integrated. -- inebriated.
those were the three things that went on in colorado that were pretty landmark. then, we had a year or so where we worked closely with the state , the governor's office, the legislature, the department of revenue to set up the rules for this new system. i would applaud the governor and his staff in that he opposed this measure all the way through the entire campaign. he was very outspoken. once the voters voted in past this, he said this is the law. the same thing with the attorney general in colorado. he said were going to do this in a thoughtful and responsible way. he has continued to do that. what is it look like in the past year? i would argue that i think it has been an unqualified success. i will speak about that. this isn't just my viewpoint is
the guy who ran the campaign. if you look at every major leader that has examined the last year in colorado, that has looked at the data, that has been on the left, on the right to the denver post, all of these thought leaders, policy leaders are saying this appears to be working. it appears to be functioning in a way that may make colorado a better place. let's talk about some of the positive steps forward and what we seen. before i launch and that, i did want to note -- i talked to the governor's office. all of the stores that you see they are regulated by the department of revenue. in order to have one of these businesses, you have to comply with hundreds of pages of code regulations, regulators knocking on your door, cameras on every
inch of the property. everybody must be a two-year resident of colorado. they must pound -- past background checks. it is tightly regulated. that is part of the reason why colorado is serving as a model. they are asking if they want to consider continuing to incarcerate people for marijuana. other states have come on since then. we have a regulatory structure that maintains this. the department of revenue is the same entity that oversees alcohol, casinos, they know how to regulate things. they took this on and said this is a product we are going to regulate. it is working pretty well. they have begun to deuce thing operations. -- to do sting operations. we are familiar with those. they are trying to buy -- and the marijuana context, they've had a difficult time getting any of these is this is to sell to
someone under 21. for a long time, it was zero successful cases. the idea that it is not happening from the storefront is clear. as i stated, i was campaigning for this measure. there are many dire predictions. if colorado legalizes marijuana, the skies going to fall, blood running in the streets, cartels will take over, nobody was ever come here to ski again. none of those negative things have come through. crime, we've had a decrease in crime across the board in colorado, particularly in denver , where you have several hundred of these stores. traffic fatalities are at a record low. it's worth noting that traffic
fatalities are down in the state. the dire predictions did not come true there. many people in here parents. it matters. how are teens going to have access one colorado legalized marijuana. there are folks like myself that argued along the way is that the last 30-40 years, teens have had universal access to marijuana. if you go to any high school they will tell you they can get it if they want to get it, right? to me, that's a sign of a policy failure. maybe it's time to think about a different policy. our argument was, listen, teens are buying this on street corners, and parks, from people that don't ask for id. we need to move the market away
from street corners, regulated and teens will have more difficult time accessing it. what we do know is that there has been no statistically significant change. a lot of people said there would be a massive spike in teens using marijuana for the first time ever and it would be terrible. in fact, we've seen no significant change. in other states, and all this comes from state and federal data, that have not legalize marijuana, they have seen spikes and marijuana use. it is hard to say where this is going to go, but in the last year or two there is not been a spike in these things. additionally, colorado high school graduation rates are higher than ever. dropout rates and in going down. again, is there a direct relationship here? maybe that is a bit of a stretch. but people who were saying this would be the worst thing for
teens ever, we have not seen that in colorado. it's getting better year after year. a couple of issues that i speak to how things are going here. the economy, what we do know is for the last 75 years, people have been buying marijuana illegally in colorado and everywhere else. the dollars of marijuana consumers have been lining the pockets of the cartels. we said were going to take that market, regulate it, put it behind the counter, and make sure only people who past background checks are going to be selling this product. as such, colorado stands to gain about $60 million this year in new tax revenue. a portion of that is allocated specifically for schools schools construction. that's about what we estimated it would be. there's been a slow rollout where certain communities would
not allow it. as such, medical marijuana is not taxed. it has been an issue. at the end of the day, we do know that were capturing significant revenue in the state. really, there's a lot of discussion that if colorado were to legalize marijuana, it would no longer be an attractive place for business. the denver area, google, 1500 person headquarters. business insider indicated colorado is the fastest pricing -- lace growing in the country. in the case of google and other things, maybe this is an incentive to business. steve jobs and other prominent americans have admitted to using marijuana. something to think about. tourism is a major issue.
a lot of people said no one will come skiing. we do know this has been a great year for the state and tourism. again, it does not seem like groups are being scared away from coming here. it seems like tourist numbers are as high as they have been. one very interesting piece is we have had about 10,000 direct jobs in this industry. that's not a small number in a down economy. if president obama's same work crawling away out, but we do have progress. we have 10,000 new jobs directly in this industry. a lot of those jobs are jobs and started $17 an hour. that is the average wage. much better than what you get in entry-level jobs.
that is meaningful. there's ancillary jobs that have risen up around this. we employ about 25 people. that's all we do is represent marijuana businesses. construction, talk to anyone in the business, particularly around where houses, and many have been rented out. there are improvements going in there. again, that economic growth we have seen from this industry. public health, one of the interesting pieces about taxing marijuana for the first time ever. previously, cartels could get away with it. now everyone has to pay taxes. about $9 million of the medical marijuana revenue is being used for the first time ever to study
medical marijuana. to see if it is useful for certain conditions. that is profound. 23 states with medical marijuana laws, yet the federal government has blocked studies in funding for medical marijuana for decades. we can agree that studying this makes sense. colorado stepped up to the plate and gave out $9 million to see if veterans with ptsd would benefit from medical marijuana. very meaningful stuff. it is obviously a positive net benefit we are seeing out of this. some other public health issues -- again, we are only 12 months into these regulated sales so it's hard to say what's going on. people are drinking less. the using more marijuana. there is a substitution. alcohol kills people. marijuana has not killed anybody in history.
i would not push that on people to use. if there is a substitution, it's worth pondering. obviously, this is not an area without challenge. marijuana continues to be in legally federally. they've said if you follow the strict state roles, this is not an area whether -- where we will come down to prosecute people. at the same time, since we have passes laws, three other states have legalized marijuana for recreational purposes. another five well by the end of 2016 p we can talk about more who that will be during the q&a. we are setting a model on how this product should be regulated, how it should be taxed, and that should only be sold to individuals 21 and over. thank you.
[applause] >> thank you, brian. next. junior carbon -- next we have gina carbone. >> ok. thanks. can you hear me ok? hold both things at one time. thank you so much for coming out tonight and it is a cold night. i am in denver. i called -- started an organization called smart colorado. the impetus was for this was that i was appointed to the governor's working group, and we
came up with the recommendations for the regulations for this whole experiment. my background is in public affairs. i worked in washington, d.c. and new york for over a decade. i got into this out of curiosity and the fact that i am a third-generation colorado native and i was very interested in what this is going to look like for colorado. most importantly, i'm the mother of four boys. raising kids in this environment is extreme he challenging. ok. that's a little bit of about smart colorado. we are a volunteer run organization. we are concerned with the commercialization of marijuana.
anyway, we were told during the campaign that this would be tightly regulated and enforce, kept out of the hands of our kids, this is a way to get rid of the black market, and it will be a huge economic windfall. i challenge those things. you will see why in this presentation. ok. the reality, colorado's citizens were not told that we would have this mass commercialization with more pot shops than starbucks and mcdonald's. that marijuana would be infused into candies and fruit flavored sodas. we have 300 different types of edibles sold, with more coming. we have pure thc concentrates widely available. colorado would become the major exporter of marijuana throughout the united states. nobody knows for sure how much
marijuana is being produced in our state. so, there are vast differences. people went into this whole idea and maybe voted for amendment 64 for a variety of reasons. one is decriminalization. legalization is different than decriminalization. finally, commercialization which is very different. in colorado, we have done all three. again, i talk about the mass commercialization in colorado, a hundred 66 shops. that is changing all the time because people are putting in applications for new facilities. over 2300 licensed marijuana facilities in the state, and this is the cultivation side the facilities where edibles are
made, and if you testing facilities. here they are. denver, that's where i live, the epicenter of marijuana, 380 marijuana shops in denver. i want to point out this is very different than seattle, same size, same population, where they have 21. we have 380. in amendment 64, one thing that brian and his coworkers dead is they let in disabilities decide if they wanted to commercialize marijuana and salad in shops. so, we have the majority of cities in colorado that it -- has said no to this. the big ones, like denver, has said yes. just let you know, there are a lot of communities across colorado that you not want to sell in stores.
i just want to talk briefly. i tell this to people my age and some of you might be older this is not the same can of pot from years ago, even 10 years ago. it is extremely potent these days. it comes in a huge variety of forms, eaten, vaporized, dabbed. edibles make up 50% of the market. anything and everything can be a marijuana infused product. we have marijuana concentrates hash oil, shatter, and waxed. 75-90% pure thc. i am sure you can get up to 100% pure thc.
this is vaporized or smoked. i've heard people refer to this as the cracked of marijuana. it is so potent. the use. that's what were really concerned about. that's why we started smart colorado. when i was on the task force with the other people, the discussion was always about how do we grow this industry, how do we allow everyone who wants to be in the business get into the business, how do we make this as big as possible. no one at the table was talking about what is is going to do to our kids. in fact, there were a list of a different priorities that the state gave us. we were supposed to rank the priorities. guess what came in dead last? concern for kids. that was everyone's last priority. again, that's why we started smart colorado after that. just a couple of things about youth use. we have had a resurgence of it.
average first ages 14 years old. marijuana is the number written -- number one reason adolescents are admitted to substance abuse programs. one in six years a casual become addicted, versus one in nine for adults. marijuana is different for adolescence with the developing brain. i will go over that again. we have had a 66% increase in the state's largest detox center. this is interesting. people thought that when we legalized it, it will shrink down the medical market. interestingly, in the first six months of legalization, the was a 46% increase in 18-20-year-olds trying to get their cards. again, medical marijuana shops you can be 18. in fact, there is no age limit. you need your parents permission if you are younger than 18. if you're 18, you can come into the shops.
we have seen a shift from people who didn't want to pay the higher taxes in recreational and they can get two ounces instead of one ounce if they went down the medical road. that is why we cut a lot of 18-20 you're getting the medical marijuana. ok, who uses medical marijuana? i guess this is no surprise. the biggest users is this age group. this is no surprise, but for a community like vail, colorado, i suspect a lot of people working on the mountain, making snow doing all that, they are in that age group. it is concerning when they could be using marijuana and working. the problem is the confusion about medical marijuana.
clearly, i do believe there are some legitimate reasons or possibilities of using medical marijuana. we just have not studied it not. what we do know though is there is massive abuse in the system we have in colorado. the statistics that i have seen in colorado are that only about 5% of people are really using it for cancer, glaucoma, hiv, those things. 95% of people are using it for general pain, and there's an awful lot of 20 something you're all snowboarders that are just out there using it to get high. we know that. the problem is though the message has been that marijuana is a wellness product and that is the message our kids are getting. it is a cure-all. and i talk to high scores, these tell me they are using it because of adhd, concentration sleep issues, headaches, anxiety, depression, ocd
menstrual cramps. they see getting high as an acceptable recreational activity because we legalized it. the messages are getting kids their music, pop culture advertising online, magazines, newspapers, commercials. marijuana is glorified and politicized. because it is sold it -- so legally in stores, it is believed to be safe. so, we have normalized marijuana use. in denver, our ordinance as you can use marijuana in your front yard. out in the open for everyone to see. a lot of people thought this was going to be for a dog in the privacy of your own home, small amounts, but unfortunately in denver, that's not what were seeing. again, our newspaper, we have all sorts of things about recipes, cultivation, pot events. the recent marijuana vince i'm sure you heard about in denver the advertisements, and the
reputation of colorado is being a stoner state now. the transfer marijuana in schools, leading story back in november 2013, pot is increasing in schools. this is a recent statistic in -- statistic. about 89 out of 100 school resource officials were surveyed and said absolutely, there is more pot in school today. we have seen the trend is increasing. this trend is also increasing, that the perception of harm is going down. this is one of the number one indicators. this is been true for alcohol and tobacco. when kids do not see things as a risk, they are more willing to try. they are more willing to use it. this is disturbing.
the perception has been going down. this is a very recent statistic. it just came out. it shows colorado versus the united states in terms of marijuana use. over age 12, as you can see, and then it breaks it down. clearly, colorado is higher than the nation and all of those groups. just briefly, i'm not a doctor but i'm sure you've heard some of this. the impact of early use. again, it affects adolescents differently. studies have shown that it can permanently alter and damage teens brains. it effects learning and memory
analysis. it affects processing, short-term memory, long-term memory, all of this. i just added this quote. "the concern that we have -- that i still have -- is whether young people will view this legalization in some way saying to them that marijuana is safe." in one week, you can permanently diminished long-term memory. he just said this the other day. so, maybe you've heard the study that heavy marijuana use when you're young can affect your iq. this is a test that we have done in new zealand. more tests need to be done, but what we have seen so far is very troubling.
is it, ok. so. ok, so, did you cut this? it doesn't seem to be -- ok. let me just jump to the in here. it doesn't seem to be -- ok. i talked about all the edibles. just a few pictures here. i was on a working group for edibles. we have had a couple of death's with edibles could we have seen an increase in hospitalization. young children coming in that are sick, but also adults, vomiting, psychosis, things that have not been seen before. it all goes back to the potency of today's marijuana. the problem of it looking like regular food. smart colorado introduced
legislation to try to get the industry to stamp or mark the food outside of the package to try to cut down on some of that confusion. we have fought tooth and nail with industry. it's been a very difficult process and i need to wrap up here. that was a billboard that we did. i guess i just want to get to the slide that says, these are very discreet vaporizers. industry says they're not marketing to kids but you wonder why the edibles look like candy and vaporizers come in asthma inhalers and different things like this. so employee drug use has been up. you can make a lot of comparisons to marijuana and the tobacco industry. revenue, is it worth it? there are tremendous costs in setting up a regulatory system
i want to point that out. enforcing it. i was just at a conference recently where one of your mountain towns, they were saying one of their biggest challenges -- they do have recreational marijuana, is, in fact resources. they do not have enough money for the staff that is going and inspecting the places, is having to enforce it, is having to look at the facilities. remember, none of the food is looked at like the f.d.a. looks at our other food to regulate it. so someone has to be looking at edibles that way. they have to be looking at the kitchens, making sure there are no contaminants because the state is not doing it. this is a burden on small communities. they have to do that kind of thing themselves. and i know we need to -- so it is a mandate on small communities. there's a strain on social services, addiction, recovery, a ton of healthcare costs like with alcohol and tobacco and
that needs to be factored in so the $60 million that brian talked about that we've made annually this year in tax revenue is really a drop in the bucket when you consider all these other costs of regulating it and setting up this whole new structure. it's about less than 1% of our overall cost for the state. and the collateral costs. these things, if you can read any of these, came actually from the department of revenue, at this conference. this was our own regulator saying that, no, this has not been as great as people have said. we've had a lot of problems. the black market, employment issues, litigation, strain on social services, adversely affecting our state. i didn't even get into the butane hash oil interactions blowing up houses going on. increase in e.r., increase in
motor vehicle accidents which my statistics show we have been increasing those. i think i will be done. urgent need for more data. we don't have all of the data and we definitely need more. this is a quote from this conference i was at with regulators and people from our state. our deputy attorney general admitted, and i quote, "it is not working. in spite of regulations, marijuana is everywhere, it's publicly consumed, widely advertised and the police have their hands tied in many enforcement actions by constitutional provisions that few if any voters understood when they voted for amendment 20 and amendment 64." anyway, thank you very much. [applause] >> i notice both of our speakers already suffer from what all speakers suffer from,
myself included, when i speak, and that is, you think i've got 15 minutes, how am i possibly going to fill that and then you get about 12 minutes in and think how am i possibly going to cover what i wanted to cover but everybody makes the same error. thank you, gena. our next speaker is san houtrie. >> thank you very much. i have been asked to give kind of a big picture. i'm from washington, d.c. and work for the institute of policy studies, progressive think tank, and i've worked on drug policy issues for the past 18 years or so and here's where i agree with some of the critics of the current policy, marijuana policy. i do believe marijuana is a gateway drug. ites gateway to the oval office. every president we've had since 1993 has violated drug laws and the same legislators. increasingly hard to find elected officials, candidates,
who can run for office and claim they've been drug free their entire lives and it's not just typical people, the al gores and al franken but newt gingrich rich santorum, they've all used marijuana so this is a question of legitimacy. these are the people writing our laws, voting on our laws and the question has to be asked, would a tough sentence have been good for them? would that have helped them in their lives and careers? if not, why is it so good for everyone else? and so the question of justice and fairness comes into play. the voters of colorado i think support a very important message not only to the nation but to the world and i don't know if people appreciate how profound those reverberations were. it sent our state department into a bit of a frenzy because they were asked suddenly by our allies in this hemisphere, many critical on the war of drugs saying not that your own citizens are turning their backs
on the war on drugs, are you going to rethink the policies you impose on us, we're required to carry out, less there be reprisal? and the obama administration hadn't come up with their marijuana policy yet so they put pressure on the justice department and they were sent scrambling. what are we going to do about this? are we going to prosecute? a lot of experimentation, et cetera. so it opened up a lot of political space both in the nation, within the federal government, and internationally. what you voters did here in colorado, you've moved a boulder, the boulder of the drug war bureaucracy which moves for no person and they were sent scrambling. other countries and states have taken a cue from colorado. uruguay voted to legalize
nationally marijuana and regulate it and tax it. they became the first nation in the world to do this. and so people think, the dutch did but all they did was depenalize it so they didn't outright legalize it but uruguay is an interesting example because uruguay never had criminalization of drug use or possession, simple possession for personal use. in fact, they codified this in the mid 1970's so that you could not get arrested for simple position of any drug or use. so if the people who say the sky's going to fall because we don't have tough drug laws when's the last time you read an article about the drug hell scape that is uruguay? it doesn't exist. what uruguay did, because they were always permitted to use for several decades now, what they did was legalize marijuana so it could be taxed and regulated and controlled so essentially they
had more control to push out the black market and criminal organizations and take that revenue and use it for prevention and regulation and to keep it out of the hands of minors. and they're about to roll that out. interesting to note that uruguay is setting a price target of $1 a gram when they first announced they would do this. whether they can meet that, i don't know. it's important to keep in mind that what we're talking about when we talk about the war on drugs whether it's cocaine or heroin or marijuana, these are minimally processed agricultural commodities that cost very little to produce and it's the policies of prohibition that make these drugs astronommically more valuable than they ought to be and that's what drives the violence for push for new markets and what-not. the international drug war pure
lock see was sent into a tizzy as well, because the international u.n. agency that enforces or tries to international drug treaties told uruguay you must roll it back to status quo before. think about what they're saying. these are drug warriors saying you may not tax and regulate and legalize and try to control marijuana, you must give it back to the criminal market. these are law enforcement people saying this. this is how badly they're scrambling to protect their jobs and budgets. and so, the sky did not fall. other countries are following that lead. jamaica just this week indicated they're going to go ahead with small possession and cultivation of recreational and medical marijuana. other countries, guatemala is clamoring for an end to the war on drug. colombia, a staunch drug war ally, historically, is pushing hard against the drug war, as well. so there's lots of change happening.
domestically, this past election, three more jurisdictions voted for marijuana legalization so we have oregon, alaska, and my home of washington, d.c. washington, d.c. is important to note here because the voters of washington, d.c. voted by a 70% margin in favor of legalization of marijuana. in washington, d.c., there are 143 precincts. do you know how many precincts voted in favor of legalization? 142. only one precinct voted against this, in the upper northwest quadrant of d.c., one of the most affluent regions of d.c. and in that jurisdiction, it lost by only nine votes. nine votes away from a complete landslide. politicians need to take note of that. republicans, of course, tried to stop this. they're saying you can't and they put an amendment on the
omnibus appropriations rider saying that washington, d.c. may not spend a penny to tax or regulate this and this was done by a tea party republican from maryland, andsy harris, who wanted to make a name for himself as a drug warrior, and he inserted an amendment in a back room deal because he didn't have the votes to do it in open debate and got the rider into the appropriations budget but the initiative itself was self enacting so on november 4 when the citizens voted, marijuana became legal to possess, to grow six plants and to gift, not to grow, but simple possession of marijuana became legal. what republicans did was prevent us from regulating it now. so this is an extreme dream of having legal marijuana and no way to regulate it. this is the gift the tea party's given us in washington, d.c. i personally want the stuff
regulated and controlled. i want more control over these substances, not less, to keep them out of the hands of children, to have good zoning policies, et cetera. now we're probably going to end up with a bit of anarchy. >> end up with what? >> a bit of anarchy and d.c.'s important because the voters of washington, d.c. pass passed this overwhelmingly, according to exit polls, as a matter of racial justice, social justice. the aclu did studies that were shocking in terms of who gets arrested for marijuana and over 90% were african american. according to the government's own surveys, the number one state in terms of marijuana use in population density is not colorado. it's rhode island. number two, washington, d.c., in terms of density. everyone knew lots of different people from all races and backgrounds used marijuana in washington but only african americans were being singled out
in a horrible way. so much so that the city council voted in favor of this. they're still trying to implement a regulatory system against the will of congress. this will end up in the courts i believe. but the city council was so behind this that even before the referendum passed, they were already holding hearings on how to tax and regulate marijuana so this is broad support within washington, d.c. in many ways, the reversal of drug war policies in this country is result of demographics. demographics is destiny with regard to this issue. the modern drug war as we've lived it has been a part of the modern culture wars and our culture wars i think stem from the division that engulfed our country in the 1960's, particularly with regard to the vietnam war which divided this country so bitterly and decisively that the schism continued to dominate our
policies for several decades afterwards because where one stood in relation to the vietnam war, whether you were for or against it, often determined where you stood in other social issues -- international marriage, sexuality, drug use, rock 'n' roll, counter culture et cetera, and those divisions have been exploitable for decades. think about the 2004 elections. the thing that really cost john kerry his election, one of him was not his stance on the iraq war, which he opposed, but his stance on the vietnam war. he was swift boated. he got smeared because of things that happened in the 1960's. and the other big thing that influenced that election was gay marriage so that karl rove was able to get 11 states to have balloted initiatives that year to vote against gay marriage, to block it in those states including ohio and other swing states which drew out the votes
so those social, wedge issues, have been useful politically exploited by the right, but they're losing their traction because demographically, the baby boomers, of which i am, i was born the last six days of the baby boom, are fading out and the next generations are coming online in terms of voting and politics so a lot of that baggage, those kinds of cultural war issues, don't resonate with younger generations. gay marriage, they could not care less, quite frankly. marijuana also falls into that category. and so these formally reliable wedge issues that were used politically to attack liberals and others as being soft, has now become a boomerang coming back at the gop and splitting that party down the middle between the libertarian republicans and social conservatives so there's a civil war within the g.o.p. and that's going to play out in
a very anything way running into 2016. and historically, this has been a third rail issue in politics. people know what third rail refers to? it comes with the subway system. third rail refers to two rails that carry the train, third one is high voltage, if you touch it, you're dead politically. so typically historically third rail issues are things like gun control, raising taxes, climate change is now a third rail issue or soft on drugs, soft on crime, that sort of thing, aid to israel, divisive issues that politicians usually run away from if they can because no matter what position they take they'll anger a good part of the electorate so they'd rather not deal with those issues but the polarization of that third rail with regard to cultural issues like gay marriage and marijuana are flipping now but what's kept it locked in place is because
the solutions to these problems are very often counter-intuitive. if it's so bad, why not have a war on drugs? one of my favorite popular philosophers, bart simpson, runs for class president and begins his campaign by attacking his opponent. "my opponent said there are no easy answers, i say he's not looking hard enough." that's the problem with washington. that's the problem with politics today. people want easy answers. it plays well on things like fox news. it's an easy sound bite and it's counter-intuitive to explain why being tough is not the same as being effective. you cannot regulate that which you deliberately drive underground and give the market over to criminals who self regulate so it's counter-intuitive. what do i mean by counter-intuitive? this is a prop i use when i talk to legislators. this is an example of counter-intuitive problem
solving. if you get stuck in one, the knee-jerk solution is to pull but the harder you pull, the stucker you get. it's counter-intuitive to think that relaxing a bit, pushing in a little bit, is how you extract yourself from a difficult problem and so the war on drugs is one of those things that has counter-intuitive solutions. so what do we do about this? if you do support what's happening in colorado and washington state and washington, d.c. and these other states, how do we operationalize. how do you solve these problems. how do you operationalize this so we can get more reform in other states trying to do similar things and i think one of the ways to do that again it's very counter-intuitive, is that there's too much accountability for politicians and before you freak out and think i'm crazy, let me give you an example.
oscar wilde once said, if you want someone to tell you the truth, give them a mask. if you all were with the u.s. congress, say 10 years ago, and i asked for a show of hands, how many of you believ we should regulate and tax marijuana much like alcohol. probably very few of you would raise your hands. if you did this today, however maybe a few more hands would come up, two or three hands and count the number. but what if i said, put your heads down on your table like in grade school and raise your hand if you believe this, if you support this. completely different result. vastly different result and i think that's the way if you give politicians a temporary veil of anonymity to have a non-binding straw poll. i don't believe law should be made in secret. there needs to be accountability in the end, but as an ice breaker -- you can do this in churches and labor unions and
associations -- have an anonymous straw poll because when you learn a lot of people in the room agree with you, it changes the nature of the conversation and jumpstarts that conversation so if you were able to survey congress today and it turned out that two-thirds wanted to tax and regulate cannabis, if you released the aggregate number, the result of that, no names attached, right just that in aggregate two-thirds of congress believes this, that gives political cover for politicians to stand up and do the right thing, the courageous thing. they can say, i'm being courageous by saying publicly what my colleagues all believe privately that it's time we change our policies on this issue and i think that's a way to solve a lot of third rail issues in washington and we're running out of time both me and congress are running out of time to deal with very serious issues. things like climate change. things like sensible gun control
or other issues that are controversial, politicians cannot deal with, they're paralyzed because they're pinned down by the gotcha votes. and i'll finish with this. it started, i think, in 1973 when the house of representatives instituted electronic voting. it made the process a lot easier. push a button, register your vote. who could be against that but the law of unintended consequences. it became easier to get recorded votes and gradually the number of recorded votes started rising. before this, they didn't go through a roll call vote every time there was a vote. they did voice votes, teller votes, sometimes count heads or parties but not names and we could have more practical politics, people could cross over the party line and say my party wants to support these polluters but i have children and grandchildren and care about the world they're going to inherit, i'm going to cross party lines and vote in favor of the legislation against my party's wishes and if you give
this temporary veil of conscience, veil, not vail, it lets politicians express their honest feelings about what they really believe is in the best interests of the nations as a whole rather than the political party. why should we be against more honesty in politics? they'll have to have a formal vote but on this but you could have an ice breaker that takes the sting out of the third rail and gotcha politics we're trapped in today because right now washington is fundamentally broken. they can't do anything. it's never been this bad and i've lived in washington since 1987 and grew up in the suburbs and with that i wish you luck and thank the voters of colorado for getting the ball rolling. [applause] >> we have learned that sanho is a christmas baby based on his statement that he's
in the last six days of the baby boom. i've also learned and he answered my question why there was a chinese finger trap sitting on the dais when he was speaking. i want to make two quick observations. article one of the united states constitution defeats the utopian idea of congressional anonymity so that would require a constitutional amendment but i think you're right. >> a straw poll, not an actual vote. >> also, whether or not you're pro or anti-marijuana or the legalization, there's a delicious irony to the federal district of columbia having legalized marijuana. ben cord is next. >> don't clap yet. you haven't heard me. getting back to we, i'm going to be quick because i've got a lot of stuff here and i think i have a unique vantage point on this. very, very quick running through
this and i'll hang out afterwards. i want to keep talking. politics aside, the election's over, we've spoken. i'm on the ground. i'll show you exactly how. i want to talk to you about what i'm seeing. i work at the university of colorado hospital, i'm on site. it's widely recognized as the thought leader in the field treating chemical dependency nationwide so we are hospital-based treatment program for adults only. we would never dream of taking anybody who is mandated. i myself, sober since 1996 happened in the district of columbia where i got popped for possession with intent, weed related. and i'm on the board of project sam, smart approaches to marijuana which somehow through this whole thing has emerged as the opposing legalization voice. in reality, and here's the charter, i'd like you to look at, to inform public policy with the science of today's marijuana, to have an honest conversation which is tough, which is why i love being here.
i was so proud to be at the aspen institute this year and more thoughtful venues where we can have discussions like this as opposed to the back-and-forth finger pointing interest interests nonsense and to prevent the establishment of big marijuana and that's a huge one for me and we advocate, sam does and i personally do, also, to promote research of marijuana's medicinal properties. i think it's silly that the university of mississippi has had this kind of blockade on it and i think there needs to be more real research because there is interesting anecdotal evidence about what you can get from components of the plant. i have yet to see a lot of that for whole plant smoked but i'm sure it exists out there. we need to really study it and so long as somebody's doing real science, i'm behind them 100% of the way. let those guys lead it but what we're not going to talk about tonight, at least me and when you ask questions, i'll punt
best-case scenario if you ask me about this, i don't care even a little bit about casual adult use. zero. get high. don't drive, don't let the kids see you. i don't care. as a drug addict myself, card carrying drug addict, living a life of sobriety right now, the last guy in the room who gets to throw a stone as somebody who choses to do this is me. i've chosen sobriety, that's who i am but i'm not going to demonize anybody who doesn't. i don't care about adult use. there are medical implications that are past my pay grade. i'm not a doctor, i've never played one on tv. thanks. but before we do -- one more thing. i'm a dad. i got three kids in public school in colorado, boulder county. so there's a lot of this comes from that. i don't want to do this. i love my day job. love it. i get to work with drug addicts all day and that's my passion. i left a non-profit that i
started with my climbing partner called phoenix multisport to join the no campaign because i was so concerned with the specific language and i left that to stay inside of treatment after working for vail resorts for a little bit but my kids in public school here, it's one of the things that compels me to do it because the idea -- we'll get to it. ok, yes, who cares. you guys know this. one in 16 -- i'll give you resources for these slides at the end if you want real science. all of the science anyone ever talks to you about, keep in mind two things, when they tell you about addiction rates involving marijuana, anything that has to do with it, keep in mind the t.h.c. content, that they were all done with the average t.h.c. count that's below 12% and i'll show you a graph in a second and longitudinal studies by definition take some time so while we get little snippets real science is needed and i'll
talk about that at the end but there also is really good real science and there's a couple of longitude nat studies and any study, any research, any data presented to me that hasn't been published and in a peer reviewed journal doesn't exist and i encourage you to consider that it's peer reviewed, it's published or it's not real. the national institute of drug abuse, read what they say about weed. the dfm5, the manual that clinicians look in to make diagnoses, we've included cannabis withdrawal as a real diagnosis and it's not because we're finally noticing it but because it's getting more and more intense because weed is getting more and more intense. this is a simple equation. what's naturally occurring inside of cannabis?
naturally occurring t.h.c. inside a grown cannabis plant? .5, .6? >> for low end. >> you're not going to detox from that. when george washington smoked that on his porch however many years ago and wrote about it he's not going to detox on that. the young kids smoking marijuana that's a 30% t.h.c. product, it changes your biology here and here. outcomes, the in more weed you smoke, the worse things work out in life. a cool, interesting, 30-year study. while some end up in the oval was office, many end up in my rehab, as well. when we say that -- you know, we have this incredible tendency to take these things and take an example here, some weird one-off freak thing that happened and say that must apply to everyone now, here. guys, public policy has to look at the public, it has to look at
the big picture, it has to look at all of us and one of the things that kills me is how often the debate is done at the theoretical level. we're here. we're living this. this is happening. this experiment -- i resent the term because experiment has controls, 100% willing participants and somebody's watching to see what happens. but the idea that -- we'll get to that in just a second. sorry. let's go to a-64, specifically because that's what you asked us to talk about. allow law enforcement to focus more on serious crimes, public safety, duid, eliminate the black market, keep weed away from kids by putting it behind the counter. humor me on some of free up law enforcement's time. who cares?
there are 30 people there. from its inception, he was a deputy chief -- yet the platform. he gets it. law enforcement is faced with resource issues in marijuana issues. blah, blah, blah. drug dogs -- i am not a cop. i am also not in the industry, or on the outskirts getting paid for it. find a cop, and ask him. has this made it easier or harder? ask him. what we are getting is coming through a lobby or special interests. ask the people on the ground -- see what they tell you. the colorado chief of police gave a statement -- here is a sound bite.
increase of marijuana by use increased incidents and abuse -- it is a little bit of data of how we are helping cops out. public consumption citations, we have not freed up all of these cops'time. this is the first -- this is the driving under the influence. trying to work through it. traffic fatalities in colorado are down, thank god. cars are getting safer, we are cracking down on cell phone use -- traffic fatalities where the operator tested positive for marijuana are strikingly up.
strikingly up. when i first made this graph, it is so high -- so many people died. the graph looks funny. this is the rubber meet in the road stuff -- this is not theoretical. this is what is going to happen -- a significant increase in people dying on our roads because someone was high. i do not care if you hide. i don't. don't let the kids see you, do not drive. they are not paying attention to stuff like this. 34% of the drivers smoke weed -- they think it makes a better driver. teen driving is scary enough. this is a sad survey -- saad
survey. -- 77% of duids involved marijuana. i could not put all of it here if i could put videos, i get a lot more playtime -- i'm sure. i apologize for the o'reilly factor mention theire. if you want to look at that, look at the segregated black market. the wholesale price of marijuana is falling. filling of their fields with opium and poppies -- marijuana legalization, did we think they were going to get jobs taco bell?
no, cartel sell drugs. look at it internationally we're introducing a culture of intoxication -- it drives that. it limited the black market, look at the report -- i give the research at the end. 40 other states we can document, we are in the black market -- these are great. i do not want to read them all just a couple. colorado has the best weed on earth. which is good for those of you using it responsibly -- not letting kids use it, not
driving. it was 709i just found, if i can get to florida, i can make money. you sell a little bit of drugs that is not how it worked back then. i would tell you how it works in just a second. this is straight off the campaign, if we do this, we are going to put it behind the counter. harder for kids to get. no one in their right mind is going to sell marijuana to a kid over-the-counter. livelihood is gone. if we catch 15 people, that is ridiculous. that is not how it works -- we have 5500 pounds of marijuana changing hands that we know of in colorado. there is so much weed, it is super easy for kids to get it. they're never going to get it from behind the counter. trust me, i worked in rehab.
this is what i see. so, the idea that we are going to keep people from trying harder drugs -- i see this all the time in the campaign. you're going to keep kids away from the corner where they are going to get offered harder drugs -- that is not how it works. you have a guy for every other drug, you don't have a secret knock, he says -- hey man, i'm running a special on methamphetamine. have you thought about getting high on this? it is how it works, your weed guy is your weed guy. now, your weed guy gives you a by one get one -- buy one get one on whippets. the birth of a shameless and unregulated market.
i've been a big supporter of decriminalization, i have given money, because i do not think people should ever go to jail for low level drugs. but as soon as you commercialize something like this, building the regulatory infrastructure, you are screwed. you want to do this right? you want to commercialize? build it solid, air tight first. so you are not trying to play catch-up with the industry that is making money. i've got good things. amanda says that the future of marijuana is more like wine or beer -- then beer. what is actually happening on
the street is so different than what is on paper. a lot is being left to the industry to regulate itself. responsible, classy, 20% off with a student id. [laughter] santos linning dealt. hilarious, if you have five-year-olds. baby jesus, came in a value pack to my house. one dollar joint, this is the scariest thing to happen to white people -- gives you every time. infused oils, we have -- you are never going to catch the industry. 10 milligrams per serving, can go with 200 milligrams advertised.
40 years, here is the last four years in colorado. this is what happens when you industrialize, it shatters. i will end on this one a good one. $79 ounces with coupons -- i wish i had more time to show you all this. rocky mountain high reports in a meta study saying -- it is fantastic and overarching check it out. >> so, the way we are going to
this, is people have questions. we have a creative way of dealing with that. i will recognize you. we have a boom mic, we will get it over to you -- let me repeat the question to the audience. let us start back here. >> the two presenters that gave us facts and data, that is what i came for. my daughter is an addict. those of us who have had some experience in this area understand the part of the conundrum -- it is a very naive population out here. forget politics. this is a serious issue. it is not being addressed, and i really do respect the facts and data that were respected -- that were represented. >> out of respect, this gentleman lost his daughter to addiction. we sympathize with your loss but i do want to focus on questions from the audience. if i can.
>> i have a two-part question, specifically, to the panel -- the question stems from the u.s. government. they classified marijuana as a schedule one. it also has no redeeming medicinal qualities, as per the government's schedule one. the fda, last may, sent a memo to the dea asking them to reclassify marijuana. d funding of the national prosecution of marijuana through the omnibus bill. can you comment on that, as
well? >> two questions, one is that marijuana has no redeeming medical value. the second question, the federal government has declared to the omnibus bill that they will stop prosecuting and defund the federal prosecution of marijuana offenses. >> the great journalists up to the sinclair in the jungle wrote about this. this is the problem, asking the dea to reschedule marijuana. it is their bread and butter -- the cornerstone in our war on
drugs. if a lot of local police departments, and certainly the nypd, this is a cache issue -- a budgetary issue for a lot of them. they will fight, if your budget was on the line -- you would want to keep and preserve it. the dea, their heart is not in it. and terms of the investigation. in terms of the prosecution, of the omnibus bill, that was cosponsored by a republican from california -- a conservative guy. our states and republicans -- they believe in states'rights. in terms of minor prosecution, we do not go after minor cases like that.
the federal government does not have a role in this. it came very close to decriminalizing marijuana at a federal level in the 1970's. the maximum penalty for drug use should not cause more harm to the individual than the drugs themselves. and that should be the basis of our policy. >> do we have something from the right side? i saw hand go up. >> i just have a question about, i think marijuana is here to stay. the question is how are we going to make the system better.
i agree, we need science -- maybe we need bigger pharma. or better control of edibles, it is very unscientific. that is where people are getting into trouble. i was wondering if colorado had anything going on in terms of trying to fix this problem. the second part of my question is, as far as law enforcement is concerned, what can they do to see if someone is under the influence of marijuana? is that a urine test. is there some sort of breathalyzer, or something that can be done? how to make the extant system better. the second is levels of marijuana in the blood -- how are they tested?
>> the first issue, colorado is under the microscope. right? simultaneously, with washington state -- our timeline is quicker here. oregon, alaska, it is certainly incumbent upon us to do it responsibly. our state government did something very smartly at the beginning. they asked people in the industry, law enforcement and district attorneys, the governor has been pretty consistent about working -- this is an issue you find it important. we think it is crucial to do so to get that input. in terms of the dui issue, this is sort of a complicated one. how is marijuana typically found in the system? in the driving contest, it is
not like alcohol -- it is usually either blood or urine . it is a little bit difficult for law enforcement, marijuana in the system -- this is where the statistic is often those tests show the existence. marijuana in non-acteiv form n remain in th necessarily. it may have been in the last two weeks. there are tests that boiled down and you can figure that out but it is not what it should be.
>> my thought on the regulatory issues here, what i would do, if i were governor, on these panels we have -- i would give the incredibly -- the industry incredibly limited seating. i would let them way and, i would give them a non-vote, let -- do we care more about promoting the profits of industry? or regulatory infrastructure? how are we going to create these jobs? how are we going to get as much we sold as we can? put a bunch of scientists and doctors on it, see what happens. >> go ahead. >> smart colorado, that is what we have been doing -- working on the policy level.
from the local level to the state level and trying to get and tighten down some of these regulations and our biggest stumbling block is how are powerful the industry arias. -- has already become. the money and influence, it is getting stronger. it is difficult for the average citizen to weigh in. and have an effect. a perfect example is the edibles. i was on the commission to put more regulation on the edibles. we met with a blockade of industry folks that said it was too expensive to do it. legislation was passed to do that. they are going to try and unwind it in the next session. there are about 30 bills on the marijuana docket that we are going to have to deal with. they are unwinding some of these very things.
whether it is the two-year stipulation that you have to be in colorado, they are trying to undo that. the hours the shops can be open, they're trying to undo that. just like any big business, they are fighting and they are using their political power and influence and money. it is up to citizens to tell their legislators that we want these industries regulated. we want to do a better job because we are not doing a good enough job right now. >> i think it is fair to say we need good regulations. rather than more liberal ones, myself. what other industries do we want to shut out? what we try to regulate coal without having cold companies present? what other industries do we do
this to? i find myself at odds with the industry. i agree. what we can agree on is prohibition is failed. criminalizing is not a good idea. if you do not believe in prohibition, and you do not like the tightening up, we need to agree that -- it is a question of where. not if. do we agree that we should not criminalize individuals? if so, it is a question of regulation. i am willing to work with anyone to figure out the best regulations. but not to shut it down altogether, and go back to the drug war. >> legalization, how will that affect the for-profit prison system? the three strikes you are out,
how is the legalization especially as it goes around the country going to affect that and how many of our last five especially as it goes around the presidents have smoked marijuana illegally that might not have been president if they were incarcerated for that? >> we have three questions. how legalization will affect the system? the second one is how many presidents recent presidents would not have been elected. and how would legalization affect states with three strike rules. >> i will address prisons. we have about 100 million americans have tried marijuana. we have about 800,000 that are arrested for this. not a lot of them end up in prison just for marijuana possession.
again, there are not tons -- be it distribution, or cultivation. there are more people in state prison, not on the federal level. not to say there is not a large impact on the justice system, in terms of police priorities, even if they are not going to prison. what have you. at the end of the day, it is not a giant driver for prison populations. you do see people getting revoked off probation, so there is some impact -- i would not save is a giant one. in terms of the past, bill clinton famously said he did not inhale.
that is probably true, because he preferred brownies. he basically admitted to it. george bush admitted it privately to his biographer. it was a conservative biographer, by the way. bush told him, privately, that i cannot really talk about my past drug use because children look up to me. so cocaine can make your delusional. cheap shot. [laughter] president obama has spoken publicly about his marijuana and cocaine use. this is something that is -- the house of representatives and senate, the 2004 primaries. the democrats were on stage,
anderson cooper said raise your hand if you have never used marijuana? the culture of the 60's generation are now in power. they have a lot of experience with marijuana. yet, these are the people voting today. and then the three strikes -- yeah. in many states, you have someone with two strikes. they test dirty, marijuana shows up in their urine -- you going for life. that is a lot of money to lock someone up. these zero-tolerance kinds of laws, two strikes and mandatory minimums, it makes politicians look tough. it is an active -- they tie the hands of judges that know better.
three strikes, proposed in california, are the people that want to repeal it. >> i'm here. >> the short version question, actually, to all of you. since we are colorado. what would all of you come up with to help advise other states who might be about to allow marijuana to be legalized there? the longer version would be, since you all come from different backgrounds and have different opinionses, i'm sure people here do as well is there any one midnight if you were going to -- from colorado which we are in project, give
to other states or congress or whatever it is that passes those laws, what one point would you press for to make sure it happens? >> so my slight editorializing of the question is that being colorado and being first in, what have we learned that we would pass on to other states contemplating legalization and/or to the federal government? >> sure. this was actually discussed quite a bit at the most recent conference i was at where we had a lot lot of our leaders and regulators there. and absolutely for these other states, go slowly. do not follow colorado's lead. we had extremely tight declines because of e-mailed 64, and as has been referred to before we are playing catch-up. all of this stuff was already on the ground. mind you, medical marijuana, although it started in 2000, it wasn't commercially legalized