Obama's New Civil Rights Division Head Wants to Decriminalize Possession of All Drugs

Photo Credit: ACLU HeadshotSo who supports decriminalizing cocaine, heroin, LSD, methamphetamine, ecstasy and all dangerous drugs, including marijuana?

No, it’s not your teenage nephew. It’s President Obama’s new acting head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, Vanita Gupta. In 2012, Gupta wrote that “states should decriminalize simple possession of all drugs, particularly marijuana, and for small amounts of other drugs.” (Emphasis mine).

Last week, President Obama appointed Vanita Gupta to the position of acting head. According to the Washington Post, the administration plans to nominate her in the next few months to become the permanent assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division. Her views on sentencing reform–a bi-partisan effort in recent years–have earned her qualified kudos from some conservatives.

But her radical views on drug policy–including her opinion that states should decriminalize possession of alldrugs (cocaine, heroin, LSD, ecstasy, marijuana etc.) should damper that support of those conservatives, and raise serious concerns on Capitol Hill.

As the deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union and the director of its Center for Justice, Gupta’s legal and policy positions are well documented in her long paper trail, which, no doubt, will be closely scrutinized if and when she is nominated and gets a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

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