Clear thinking about drug policy
Director, Drug Policy Institute and Assistant Professor, University of Florida College of Medicine, Division of Addiction Medicine, Department of Psychiatry
President, Policy Solutions Group, Inc.
About

About

From 2009-2011, I served in the Obama Administration as Senior Advisor at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). Now I am a consultant working with governments, NGOs, the media, and other organizations on a wide range of drug policy issues. My areas of specialization include evidence-based drug prevention, treatment, and law enforcement (both domestic and international), as well as the impacts of drug legalization and “medical” marijuana.
Drug Policy Principles

Drug Policy Principles

I am often asked where I stand on the “drug war.” A more constructive exercise would be to list some ways drug policy could be improved. Here, I briefly state what I think about drugs and why.
Latest entries

Experts Say Marijuana Industry May Imitate the Worst Parts of the Tobacco and Alcohol Businesses

By Elizabeth Jackson, Published: April 28, 2015 Marijuana legalization has spread a great deal in various states the likes of Colorado, Washington state, Oregon, and Alaska over the past few years. This may have given rise to more opportunities of being able to buy and sell pot. However, this for-profit industry may not have public health in...
Marijuana Critic Praises Minnesota's 'Limited' Program

Marijuana Critic Praises Minnesota’s ‘Limited’ Program

By Sam Louwagie, Published: April 21, 2015 at 6:41 PM Police chiefs from around Minnesota heard a case against the legalization of marijuana Tuesday from a former White House drug policy adviser. As the summer opening of the state’s medical marijuana program approaches, Kevin Sabet, a former senior adviser at the Office of National Drug Control Policy,...
4/20 Series: 12 Key People to Watch in Marijuana Policy

4/20 Series: 12 Key People to Watch in Marijuana Policy

By John Hudak, Published: April 20, 2015 at 8:00 AM Marijuana policy has emerged as a key issue in American politics, particularly over the past few years. The issue is being debated at local, state, and federal levels, and has captured the attention of media organizations and research institutions nationwide and around the world. Navigating the policy...
Police on Guard as MN Gears up for Medical Marijuana Program

Police on Guard as MN Gears up for Medical Marijuana Program

By Jon Collins, Published: April 21, 2015 Police chiefs across the state are preparing for the launch of Minnesota’s medical marijuana program this summer. Minnesota passed one of the country’s most restrictive medical marijuana laws last year. It prohibits personally growing marijuana or smoking marijuana and can be prescribed for less than a dozen conditions. Kevin...

Step 1: Legalize. Step 2: Commercialize.

By Kevin Sabet, Published: April 20, 2015 Kevin Sabet is one of the leading voices opposing the legalization of marijuana in the United States. He has been featured on the front page of the New York Times and in virtually every major media publication and news channel on the subject of drug policy. MercatorNet’s associate editor,...

CNN Weed 3 Special Overstates Marijuana’s Medical Potential

Today, SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana) President Dr. Kevin A. Sabet released a statement on the CNN special, Weed 3: “Of course, we have to study marijuana to examine its medical potential. The goal, according to the Institute of Medicine, should be to develop non-smoked medications based on marijuana’s components for specific medical conditions. As the...
Critics of Marijuana Legalization: Pot Backers See Dollar Signs

Critics of Marijuana Legalization: Pot Backers See Dollar Signs

By Alan Johnson, Published: December 20, 2014 at 5:30 AM The belief that marijuana is a growth industry appears to be the driving force behind a planned 2015 constitutional amendment that would ask Ohioans to authorize 10 individuals or businesses to grow and sell marijuana wholesale for personal and medicinal use by residents 21 or older. Despite being in...

Momentum Growing for Pot to Be on November Ballot

By Chris Vanocur, Published: April 6, 2015 Watch the video here. COLUMBUS (Chris Vanocur) — According to a new Quinnipiac poll, a majority of Ohioans now support recreational use of pot. Not only are these poll numbers good for marijuana supporters, but their “grassroots” efforts are also collecting a lot of ballot signatures. “We’ve found in...
In Colorado, Medical Marijuana Sales Are Overtaken by Recreational Pot Revenues

In Colorado, Medical Marijuana Sales Are Overtaken by Recreational Pot Revenues

By Susan Scutti, Published: March 20, 2015 at 2:03 PM Though sales of recreational marijuana are increasing swiftly, medical marijuana sales in Colorado fell during 2014, GreenWave Advisors calculated, along with the number of new medical cardholders, CNBC reported. Many medical users in the state have begun to purchase on the recreational side despite a lower tax...

Oregon Lawmakers Seek Federal Tax Code Change for Legal Pot

By Gosia Wozniacka, Published: April 9, 2015 PORTLAND, ORE. — Two members of Oregon’s congressional delegation plan to introduce bills that would allow marijuana businesses operating in compliance with state law to take federal deductions on taxes like other small businesses. U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and Congressman Earl Blumenauer say the legislation would alter a section of...
Congress Rethinks Policy on Medical Marijuana

Congress Rethinks Policy on Medical Marijuana

By Divya Chawla, Published: April 15, 2015 Polls show that 78% of Americans believe medical marijuana with a physician recommendation should be legal. Meanwhile, federal law prohibits the sale, possession, production, and distribution of marijuana. However, twenty-three states have “legalized” the use of marijuana for medical purposes, creating conflicts with the federal law. Newly introduced federal legislation would pave the way for...

Pot Legalization across U.S. May Hinge on 2016 California Vote

By Bloomberg News, Published: April 13, 2015 at 4:17 PM SAN FRANCISCO — A fight next year over whether to allow recreational marijuana use in California may serve as a tipping point as legalization proponents press their campaign in other states. “A lot of eyes are on California,” Gavin Newsom, the state’s lieutenant governor and...