Jimmy Kimmel Confronts President Obama Over Marijuana Legalization

  • by Russ Belville, NORML Outreach Coordinator April 29, 2012
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    “Marijuana is something that real people care about.” — Jimmy Kimmel (forward to 21:50 or click here)

    Late night comedian Jimmy Kimmel performed at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner and took a moment to confront President Obama on his marijuana crackdown.

    I do have one real question for you, Mr. President.  What’s with the marijuana crackdown?  I mean, seriously, what’s the concern, we will deplete the nation’s Funyun supply?

    You know, pot smokers vote, too.  Sometimes a week after the election, but they vote.

    Let’s take a quick poll.  I would like everyone in this room to raise your hand if you’ve never smoked pot.

    Raise your hands if you've never smoked pot.

    [Very few hands go up.]  Heh heh.  There you go.  Look at Brit Hume – he’s high right now.  He’s on his fourth almond macaroon.

    Mr. President, I hope you don’t think I’m out of line here, but marijuana is something that real people care about.  The fact that you believe Speaker Boehner when he tells you he still has control of his party leads me to believe that you must be smoking some crazy great weed yourself.

    Woody Harrelson just woke up.

    Thank you, Jimmy Kimmel, for exemplifying how a cannabis consumer can be polite yet direct in calling on the president to explain a policy that is no longer supported by a majority of Americans.  Half of this country supports outright legalization of marijuana and three-quarters think marijuana punishments, if any, should be no more than ticketable offenses, not crimes.

    185 Responses to “Jimmy Kimmel Confronts President Obama Over Marijuana Legalization”

    1. Marsha S says:

      Love it Jimmy..”raise your hand if you’ve never smoked pot”…there you go!

    2. jbkorn02 says:

      I really hope we hear some kind of response to this. Thank you Jimmy Kimmel!

    3. hanspy says:

      Ok. Thats settlet. When it wil be legal?

    4. russ says:


    5. Brandon Boucher says:

      I wish everyone had a sense of humor like this. If only we had real people running America under the watchful eye of the non-government citizens.

      Notice how it was just a big joke to everyone though, even trough Kimmel’s sincerity…

    6. Brandon Boucher says:

      I wish everyone had a sense of humor like this. If only we had real people running America under the watchful eye non-government citizens.

      Notice how it was just a big joke to everyone though, even through Kimmel’s sincerity…

    7. Jeedi says:

      Thank you Jimmy Kimmel. You got my vote!

    8. JAY says:

      It’s about time someone rubbed Barrys nose in it.

    9. Tom says:

      Thanks Jimmy!

    10. russ says:

      I hope this means we’ve made a step forward in marijuana legalization

    11. David says:

      Thank You Jimmy.

    12. Bobby says:

      Wow, lots-o-squirming and FAKE “smiles” going on here. Jimmy, you just might be my new hero!

      Heathcare – whether we want it or not.
      Obama’s agenda – RED
      Newt’s Parents – Michellin Man + Pilsbury Dough Boy


    13. Delia says:

      Lets see crack down on marijuana, crack down on raw milk, crack down on those exposing government waste and corruption. While ignoring his friend Jon Corzine stealing $1.6 Billion. I think his priorities need change.

    14. PUFFER says:

      I would’nt keep saying “Crack“ down mr.pres. Maybe that is his problem. Put the crack pipe down bro.

    15. LH says:


    16. Tim says:

      Marijuana is a Crime Hang Them High Put Them in Prison For a Long Time

      Crime – Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary
      an act or the commission of an act that is forbidden or the omission of a duty that is commanded by a public law and that makes the offender liable to punishment …

    17. Please Mr. President help us who are in pain, with legalizing medical marijuana. I’ve been on opiates and they get you hooked and sick, and they are legal. When you get down to it, they’re both plants God gave us. Also where does most of the opium come from? You’re right the Middle East!!! Thank You

    18. TimC says:

      A friend of mine has Macular Edema and was taking two 340.00 shots in her eyes a month to try to save here vision.. when on the pharmaceutics here vision got to 20/250 in the right and 20/260 in the right. She was basically blind fr a year till she was convicnced to try pot.. she now has 20/50 in both eyes and got her drivers license back and the sad thing is if she gets caught with the pot she will become a criminal and go blind.. this government policy is messed up. If she goes blind she wont be paying taxes and her burden on our society will go up.. This Drug policy must change NOW.

    19. jazzmin says:

      It would be so disruptive to the politics of this country to legaize it. I am all for it, but I will be voting to not legalize it any further than it is now here in California. If you think it through, you’ll discover that jobs ie law enforcement, would be a large area of job loss, prison/state workers..who are already losing jobs/being laid off here. Many repurcussions to think about in the long term. i believe it needs much more thought & planning. If one wants to partake, there are 30 diagnosis in the legal medicinal cannibis that are approved for use…..I have taken my ‘medicine’ this morning….I am a retired nurse, 58y/o. Think about what would be directly affected if it were legalized further, make informed choices. Promote education and the study of legalizing it!

      [Russ responds: So… we need to keep arresting 850,000 Americans a year and allowing murderous Mexican drug criminals to reap the benefits of our marijuana economy? Sorry, there will be plenty of jobs in hemp and marijuana for all the laid off prison guards and DEA and if not, then tough. Nobody – not a dealer, doctor, prison guard, pot grower, or prohibitionist deserves to make an undeserved living off the suffering of cannabis consumers.]

    20. Raymond says:

      In case any of you pot heads have forgotten MARIJUANA is a smoke and smoking can lead to lung cancer..Count on pot heads to push to legalize some thing that can kill you..

      [Russ responds: Count on the ignorant to visit the NORML Blog and leave uneducated comments. Dr. Tashkin’s 30-year study of marijuana smokers found they not only don’t have an increased risk of head, neck, and lung cancer, and do not have increased risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or emphysema, but they have less risk of cancer than non-smokers.]

    21. Dave says:

      uh huh, so in your opinion, all cigs and cigars should be illegal? cigarette smoke kills more people than anything in this country.

    22. raymond says:

      In case you potheads haven’t realized it yet MARIJUANA is a weed that you smoke and smoking can lead to CANCER..Get your heads out of the clouds of smoke and come down to earth and face reality..

    23. Lessie says:

      I dont understand how they could have smoked it and still insist its sooooo bad. I have been smoking since 1965 and I still love my doobie.. They are just proving to us that our wants and needs do not count. Their narrow minds are what counts to them and thats it. They need to get over themselves and open those ears to what the people want on more then this issue.

    24. Joe says:

      I like how Obama smiled at his jokes, especially when he said you must be smoking some crazy good weed yourself.

    25. Lessie says:

      Oh and Raymond, no sir, there is no proof that Marijuana causes lung cancer. It is the ingredients in tobacco that causes lung cancer and most of those do not exist in Marijuana. I have been smoking for 47 years and my lungs are just fine thank you very much.

    26. JJ says:

      Thanks jimmy for your polite honest and realistic view of this seriously simplistic change that is well overdue

    27. Bryan says:

      Perhaps you have neglected to read the current research regarding marijuana effect on cancer which has shown that the use of the drug helps to fight the disease in humans or you are a right wing finatic who would rather rant then educate yourself on the issue. Kudos to Jimmy Kimmel on his addressing this ridiculous, pointless, prohibition that has gone on too long. Legalize it now !!

    28. ty link says:

      Ok for the stupid commits about lung cancer, you should do ur research before you make that statement, because, you are wrong, cigs, alcohol, and the # 1 killer pharm drugs. Oh and for the nut job that said, law enforcement would lose jobs, well THE USA, houses more non violent criminals than all countries combined, how about we put Congress in jail, so we can all live to be free. Maybe we should jail you for your commit.

    29. PixiDustr says:

      THANK YOU for putting that out there at the dinner table! It’s where a lot of good American Discourse starts!

    30. jakob says:

      Raymond, you need to check your facts because cannabis has been proven to kill cancerous cells, not cause it. in addition, no one has ever died from cannabis.

      what about cigarettes, alcohol, prescription pills? Those are all legal

    31. F. Goodman says:

      It is a tragedy that the government continues to wage war against the citizens of the United States in the War against cannabis.
      It is a extremely beneficial plant that many hard working adults choose to partake in for various personal reasons.
      Sadly i believe this plant will never be legalized, truthfully i do not ever see it even being open for honest debate.
      My faith in humanity grows weaker by the hour…
      Thank you Mr. Kimmel and all who believe in believe in the people.

    32. Deanna says:

      Actually MARIJUANA is a plant… Which can be made into a vapor or oil & yes, also a smoke.

    33. jakob says:

      Raymond, you need to check your facts because cannabis has been proven to kill cancerous cells, not cause it. in addition, no one has ever died from cannabis.

      what about cigarettes, alcohol, prescription pills? Those are all legal and actually kill thousands of people yearly.

      Do some research before spreading misinformed garbage. Ignorant ass.

    34. LibertyJo says:

      Jimmy wouldn’t have to explain this concept to Ron Paul…

    35. JJ says:

      Raymound your defense is seriously out dated it is like when your mama said don’t make that face it will stay like that sometimes ignorant stuck up air heads drive me nut when they open their mouths but then I remeber thats why I love freedom of speech

    36. Les V says:

      For the record, no deaths have been attributed to marijuana, so any “dangerous drug” paranoia is irrelevant. In parts of Europe where drug use is decriminalized, drug use has actually gone down.

    37. F. Goodman says:

      Raymond, i understand you are just an ‘internet troll’ but so we do not spread any misinformation, there has never been any study linking cannabis smoke to cancer.
      I understand your views they seem logical, smoke must be bad, there are several other ways to ingest cannabis such as using a vaporizer(which creates no toxins) or cooking and eating the cannabis.
      Actually there are very little toxins whatsoever in the cannabis plant, this is why no matter what you can never die from consuming it.
      If you eat about 6-10 pounds of raw potatoes, you will get sick and die. I doubt you endorse banning or making illegal potatoes.
      Even the breathing process itself creates free radicals in your body, if antioxidants in your system do not deal with these free radicals they could mutate into cancer cells.
      Even breathing clean air could potentially lead to a scenario it will be the end of your life.
      Good luck and take care.

    38. Jared says:

      Thank you Raymond. While you’re at it, please explain why cigarettes are legal? And for that matter why the shotty air in city is legal? Thanks again, you’re a big help.

    39. Joe Thinnes says:

      Mr.President,You know the dept that we are in and you also know how bad the pill problem is why not make medical marijuana tax card for $100.00 a year and get this country back on it’s feet.America is the ONLY country that imprisons more of their own people than any other country in the world for the smallest offences.Dr’s,Lawyers,business men and women,Congress men and women and past President’s have used pot it is just a way to screw the people out of their hard earned money due to the law..

    40. Marijuana can be vaporized or cooked into foods, it does not need to be smoked.

    41. Lynn says:

      Cigarettes & alcohol are Killers- why are they legal?! And many pharmaceuticals are worse and killing more & more people!

    42. Luke says:

      MARIJUANA is not a smoke. It is a herbal plant, that if used correctly, can provide healthier alternatives to government-aided drugs such as hydrocodone, roxycodone, opiates, benzos and similar drugs that lead to extremely unhealthy addiction and illness/death. In fact, most medical patients use vaporizers and/or edibles for the THC in marijuana, deeming it a very healthy MEDICATION. As for legalization, it may not be an immediate answer but with further advocacy for tolerance, it will be almost inevitable due to economic increases in revenue generated from sales/tons of savings in the “war on drugs”, a break for the overcrowded jail cells in America (many of which are on cannabis-related drug charges), and the list goes on. The strain on marijuana is keeping our society in stagnation, when we need to be more open-minded and stop letting our ego and sense of entitlement ruin us.

    43. Justin says:

      Raymond are you an idiot, you do not have to smoke marijuana to get high. There is vaporizing, edibles, and gels.

      As for repercussions, it would create jobs, you need people to regulate the market sort of like the ATF is for alcohol and tobacco, it will cause people who already to buy it to pay taxes on it.

      And as for someone calling it a crime, so is speeding, oral sex, and a few other things that go against the grain.

      Our country wasnt founded on listening to the King, we broke laws to form this country ant thats part of the reason why it makes it so great.

      Get over yourselves, if you dont like pot dont smoke it, if you dont like abortions dont get one, if you dont like guns dont own one. If you dont like having your rights taking away dont take away others.

    44. Ben says:

      @Raymond: kind of like any tobacco product? Which are legal?

      Cheeseburgers can kill you too, if you eat too many of them. Let’s ban cheeseburgers.

    45. bob says:

      @Raymond: Hey Raymond Marijuana is not a smoke, it’s a plant and it can be taken in a lot more ways then just being smoked.

    46. Jeremy says:

      @raymond…ur obviously no doctor…marijuana smoking, as looked up on webmd, has so link to lung cancer, in fact some strains attack and cure lung cancer. On average habitual pot smokers live 2 years longer then not pot smokers. @tim….it’s not a crime in states that have legalized it medically…and if laws change, which is what more then 3/4 of America is fighting for, it won’t be a crime at all.

    47. Tammyt says:

      Thank you Jimmy, for your brave and brilliant comments!

    48. melissa says:

      Raymond, marijuana slows the growth of cancer cells. But even then, that is their own choice, as is smoking cigarettes or drinking coffee, which has thousands of unknown chemicals and only twenty known. I’d rather smoke marijuana.

    49. Mark says:

      As soon as a test is developed to tell if a person is under the effects of marijuana, the argument for legalization will be taken more seriously…

      [Russ responds: There are such tests. Drug recognition experts are fairly well trained to identify the tell-tale signs of current marijuana use. Science is also working on roadside saliva and epocrine (armpit) sweat tests that would have a reliability similar to the alcohol breathalyzer.]

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