Boxer: Legalizing pot could increase crime, car accidents

By John Byrne
Monday, April 5th, 2010 -- 8:08 am

barbara boxer Boxer: Legalizing pot could increase crime, car accidents

California Sen. Barbara Boxer has a message for marijuana law reform activists: Just say no.

The liberal senator's position might come as a surprise, but it's no surprise to those who follow California politics: Boxer is facing perhaps the toughest reelection race of her career in 2010. She's neck-and-neck with former GOP Rep. Tom Campbell and slightly ahead of former Hewlett Packard chief Carly Fiorina.

In a statement issued late Friday to liberal blog Talking Points Memo, Boxer's campaign manager Rose Kapolczynski said the senator opposes a California ballot measure that seeks to legalize and tax marijuana.

"Senator Boxer does not support this initiative because she shares the concerns of police chiefs, sheriffs and other law enforcement officials that this measure could lead to an increase in crime, vehicle accidents and higher costs for local law enforcement agencies," Kapolczynski said. "She supports current law in California, which allows for the use of medicinal marijuana with a doctor's prescription."

Boxer's six-year Senate term comes to a close this year. She'll stand for election Nov. 2 against a yet-to-be-determined Republican challenger.

Story continues below...

The marijuana legalization measure will be on the Nov. 2 ballot as well.

If California voters approve, it will be the most comprehensive reform of marijuana laws ever undertaken in the United States. While some states, such as Oregon, have relatively lax penalties for possession, no state has attempted to regulate and tax the herb before.

The measure's chances are good: A poll taken last April found that 56 percent of Californians want to see the herb legalized and taxed.

According to the L.A. Times, the measure would make it legal for anyone over 21 to own an ounce or less of pot, and to grow pot for personal use in a space no larger than 25 square feet. It would also give cities the right to license marijuana growers and sellers, and to collect taxes on the crop.

  • playitcool
    Funny thing about laws - If you remove them, you don't have criminals. Case in point: WALL STREET!
  • Ozlanthos
    This from a woman who carries a .38 snub-nose in her purse, but has made it virtually IMPOSSIBLE for other Californians to get conceal and carry handgun permits!!! What else can Californians expect from her but lies, and hippocracy? I mean really, it makes no sense to say that taking a multi-BILLION DOLLAR CASH CROP out of the hands of CRIMINALS is going to create more crime! If anything, changing the legal status of marijuana is more likely to reduce the number of "criminals" (due to the fact that people who use marijuana are currently considered to be criminals).

    -Oz
  • NHumphreys
    Even the politicians that support this, support it because it will give them more money to spend. Not because it is the right thing to do.
  • cremater
    WHo cares what Boxer thinks? The legislators are not in control of this initiative, the people are. They cannot control the outcome or lose the initiative in comittee somewhere. The only thing Boxer can really do on this issue is the same thing the rest of Californians can do, vote her opinion at the ballot. There is no political wrangling here, there is no ammendments that can be offered by legislators heck the legislators cannot even modify the bill if it passes, it would have to be submitted to the public for them to vote on any changes. Its the nature of the beast.

    AS far as which way you should vote on this initiative, actually do the research and use some critical thinking skills and you will arrive at the correct decision with which to cast your vote. Any reasonable person, after doing thier proper due dilligence, will vote to tax, regulate and control marijuana.
  • brantl
    Ms. Boxer, as much as I love you about a lot of other stuff, you're FOS about this.
  • Dave
    It will increase law enforcement costs???????? It will reduce them greatly by keeping pot smokers out of our jails!! It will disarm a portion of the black market! It will take police budgets and direct them to needed areas! Madness!!!
  • harrymellon
    Boxer another lame, outdated democrat like the republicans. but they have a tea party. what do we have? nada.
  • gr8fuldaniel
    By THAT logic .... Alcohol should be outlawed!
  • conspiraseer
    She must be on the take from druglord gangBangers...

    oh yeah: the Federal Government DOES pay her salary!!
  • kwertie
    The first word we hear from this twat since her last election, and it's about this.

    Hey Boxer! Where the fuck were you when we needed to get rid of Bush??

    I can't imagine why anyone calls Boxer a liberal. Or a Democrat for that matter. She's as bad as Feinstein. Both of them worthless pieces of shit.
  • krystarobinson
    its funny to me what politions will say when there necks are on the line/ are trying to get reelected... I would like to read her views of this before her term came to an end ( at the begining) also how tupid could she be thinking that going against it would secure her position when something like 62% of Californians want it leagal...really Boxer, really?
  • theowb
    Obviously Boxer must have an inordinate amount of punches to her commonsense gland! She is just another parrot who knows nothing about what she speaks! I am so very sorry to point out the real refer madness, which is the outdated frame of mind from the 50's!
    Please try to know something about what you know nothing, In my opinion, this is the story in a nut shell!!
    The "OWB"
  • Westcoastliberal
    I can't believe what I'm hearing coming out of Boxer's mouth. Boy has she misgauged public opinion in California. I guess she figures her opponents will be against legalization so she's pre-empting them on the subject, but I'll bet this will cost her votes, mine included. We not only need the tax revenue from legalization but it will give Californians a new way to "Work at Home" and give a boost to agriculture (legally).
  • theoracle
    Based on her "reasoning," Boxer would have been against repealing Prohibition, because repealing the ban on alcohol would lead to an increase in crimes and more car accidents.

    She obviously forgets that just as in the case of the banning of alcohol, making marijuana illegal has not stopped people from imbibing, which means that corresponding increases in crimes and car crashed must be evident in the intervening prohibition years.

    And yet during Prohibition, any increase in crime usually involved people trying to skirt the alcohol ban, whether organized crime looking to make a buck, moonshiners, speakeasy operators or home-brewing bathtub-ginners. Finally, enough juries said enough is enough, since many jurors either imbibed or knew someone who did, so many juries started refusing to convict.

    Maybe something similar will happen where marijuana is involved. And I really doubt that car accidents will increase if the marijuana prohibition is repealed, since people have been smoking dope and driving cars over the past fifty years with probably no more nor less accidents occurring than if they'd been non-stoned. Accidents happen, whether one's stoned or not, whether one's drunk or not...whatever.

    Regarding crime levels, if marijuana were legalized, then the middle-men currently producing and distributing it would be cut out, which no doubt would DECREASE crime levels and also the number of people in prison...kind of like what happened following the repeal of the prohibition of alcohol. In fact, making marijuana a criminal offense actually helped organized crime, since marijuana now replaced alcohol as a way for the mob to make a buck.

    So, repealing the ban on marijuana would have a net positive effect: less crime, very little if any increase in car accidents, while a whole lot of American citizens would be more mellow (and hungry for pizza).
  • davidrvelasquez
    "increase in crime"???... nonsense!
    Imagine how many people would be freed from the jails and have their lives and careers returned to them. Imagine how many people would no longer suffer economic hardship from the fines. Imagine how many drug money supported criminals would have to find other revenues. Imagine the millions in revenue for the cash strapped state and the millions saved in court and incarceration costs. Imagine cops being freed up to investigate real crimes.

    The stupidity of her argument is only equal to the obvious dishonesty and blatantly spineless political posturing.
  • thebl00dhound
    What Boxer is saying is that she gets under-the table money from the DEA's drug operations and this bill would hurt her bank account! INVESTIGATE BOXER FOR MONEY LAUNDERING!
  • markusgarvey
    EARTH TO BOXER!!!...56% of Californians want this...
  • markusgarvey
    her butt must really hurt after pulling this stinker out of there...i hope she reads this as she is drinking her glass of wine and taking her Valium before she drives home...
  • indi_progressive
    GODAM these people are frekain idiots. Increased CRIME? How much more increased can it get than decapitation?????????
  • markusgarvey
    mass decapitation?...
  • Adam
    Just another mindless, ignorant politician who obviously doesn't have an opinion of her own.
  • johanneschimpou
    what a dyke
  • LetsSaveDemocracy
    Barbara Boxer needs to smoke more pot.
  • diannehoneyman
    She is just a stupid as Stephen Harper. She must be a mushroom, doesn't know much about reality!!
  • floydkrautner
    Senator Boxer better get up to speed about California voters. Especially Democrats. She seems determined to alienate millions of California voters that smoke marijuana recreationally. A large majority of marijuana consumers vote for Democrats and she is going to need all the support she can get for her re-election, which makes this a bad time to alienate a new voter bloc.

    Here's a clue. Are there more cops voting or more pot smokers?
  • Her district should primary her against a more progressive candidate. Her argument makes no sense and is likely just Republican-style fear mongering.
  • njt
    there could be more crime because the black market dealers (already willing to break laws) will lose their source of income and will be forced to resort to crime in order to support themselves.
    More car accidents? From the research studies I've read, states legalizing marijuana can expect LESS car accidents. I recall the science shows that drivers under the influence of marijuana drive less aggressively and more safely.
  • Groaner
    I apologize for hijacking this thread; I am not registered elsewhere. We need to understand that CBS/NCAA has taken away a great national tradition for money. Every announcer, pundit and sportswriter, well those with consciences, told us that Duke had the easiest route to the Final Four and so they did. Now they have worked it so that a lot more people will watch by securing a spot for Butler, a huge underdog, in the final. Disgusting work by an institution, the NCAA, which is supposed to be all about the "student athlete." Again, I apologize
  • jay47
    This is the smartest Senator in Washington? These "concerns" of hers are no where found in the scientific or medical or criminological research.
    What a sell out! Too bad she is the best California can do. Good thing she is on the right side of most issues.
  • ballardmike
    That makes no sense... it's already responsible for a lot of crime because it is criminalized. Traffic accidents will continue unabated regardless.

    C'mon Sen. Boxer!! You can do better than that.
  • owl
    Prohibition of alcohol didn't stop anyone from drinking.
  • keneri
    Hey, Barbara...and maybe it won't change a thing. Please join the 21st Century.
  • tropicgirl
    If you just de-criminalize it, then the too-big-to fail banks can still launder the money and the CIA goons can fund their secret wars.

    Yes they do. Look it up.

    But if its legalized, everyone can make money, then I think we have our next boon. Jobs, jobs, jobs.
  • grindermonkey
    Amazing. A "law and order" candidate. It's been a while...
  • MakeChessNotWar
    I may have to vote for her but not one dime of support nor any assistance for her campaign. She is just being a fool on this.Unless she wants to reinstate prohibition. We'd be much safer if all the drinkers switched to pot.

    Shame on you, Boxer. It is time we had a senator who lives in the 21st century.
  • nader paul kucinich gravel
    boxer better hurry and outlaw booze
  • jay
    How is this possible? you're only driving 10 miles an hour...
  • greylox
    **That's what I was thinking! How many people smoke and drive? Got munchies, don't need to travel.
  • mano
    Time to send her packing.
  • Navy Vet
    Hopefully this is the final nail in Boxer's political coffin. Eliminate Carly Fiorina - her business failures and the Demon Sheep ads - from the race and Boxer is in serious trouble. Why she doesn't have a serious challenge within the party is a question that remains unasked.
blog comments powered by Disqus