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Monday, October 24, 2011

Medical Marijuana Advocates to Protest Obama's Visit to San Francisco

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2011 at 10:05 AM


Lunch with the president isn't cheap -- it also doesn't come without some clamor.

About 200 diners will munch on whatever $7,500 nets them at the W Hotel tomorrow where President Barack Obama -- and medical marijuana advocates -- will be for his fundraiser. Dispensary operators, legal cultivators, and the people who say their lives depend on state-legal medical cannabis -- which is now the target of an organized federal crackdown across California -- will join a local legislator on Tuesday before descending to the W Hotel, where they plan to make noise which Obama's supporters will have no choice but to hear.

Unless, of course, there's a back entrance handy for the greasers of political machines.

Obama is in California to raise both money and his public profile -- which he'll attempt Tuesday evening in Los Angeles when he tapes an episode of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Think His Chinniness will broach the weed question?

In San Francisco, the luncheon is slated to begin at 11:30 a.m. at the W, the ritzy hotel at 181 Third St.

Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) will host a press conference at 10 a.m. at the Marriott Hotel at 299 Second St., where he and the city's medical cannabis community will meet, outline their grievances, and move out in time to cause a spectacle upon Obama's arrival.

"The DOJ's actions are sending Americans into unemployment and replacing legitimate jobs with illegal drug dealers, as patients will inevitably be forced to turn to the black market for their medicine," read a statement issued by SPARC, the Mission Street dispensary once compared by the New York Times to an Apple store.

Protesters are asked to stand at the northwest corner of Third and Mission Streets.

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About The Author

Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts has spent most of his adult life working in San Francisco news media, which is to say he's still a teenager in Middle American years. He has covered marijuana, drug policy, and politics for SF Weekly since 2009.


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