A proposal to legalize marijuana has the most supporters of any issue submitted to the White House's new online petition website, qualifying the issue for a formal response from the Obama administration.
When the White House launched the website, officials promised to respond to any petition that received more than 5,000 signatures within 30 days. The marijuana legalization question has so far garnered over 17,000 signatures, and two other petitions related to legalizing marijuana have also exceeded 5,000 signatures.
Isn't it time to legalize and regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol? the petition reads. If not, please explain why you feel that the continued criminalization of cannabis will achieve the results in the future that it has never achieved in the past?
Among the other petitions that have broken the 5,000 signature mark are a call to ameliorate animal homelessness, an initiative to remove the phrase under god from the Pledge of Allegiance and a request to investigate judicial and prosecutorial misconduct in the trial of Sholom Rubashkin, an ultra-Orthodox Jew and leader in the Lubavitcher hasidic movement who was convicted of 86 counts of fraud for his time running a large slaughterhouse and meat processing plant.
The right to petition your government is guaranteed by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, the website reads, adding that If a petition gets enough support, White House staff will review it, ensure it's sent to the appropriate policy experts, and issue an official response.