Top 10 Suggestions from American People to President Obama

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The American people have spoken. As President Barack Obama’s transition team wrapped things up before he officially took office in January, staffers compiled a list of the most pressing issues facing the country, based on feedback from the populace. Compiled in the “Citizen’s Briefing Book,” thousands of ideas were offered to President Obama through his website, change.gov. Approximately 125,000 people submitted more than 44,000 ideas, which were then voted on by visitors to the website. After tallying the 1.4 million votes cast, the Obama team listed the major vote-getters, 60 in all, which were awarded 10 points for every positive vote received.

 
For all the fanfare that accompanied the project when it was first announced, it is worth noting that the Obama team released the final report with zero publicity. In fact, the report itself does not even highlight the most popular ideas with, for example, a “Top 10” list. Perhaps that’s because had they done so, the No. 1 idea listed would have been the call to legalize marijuana (buried on p. 26 of the report). At 92,970 points, the idea to decriminalize marijuana easily beat out other ideas like ending torture (sixth place) or revoking the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy (seventh place). In fact, marijuana placed twice among the top 10. At No. 3 is the demand that the federal government stop interfering with state medical marijuana laws.
 
Having combed through the briefing book, AllGov.com determined those ideas that really did make the top 10, based on points received:
 
1. End marijuana prohibition (92,970)
2. Commit to becoming the “greenest” country in the world (70,470)
3. Stop using federal resources to undermine states’ medicinal marijuana laws (66,170)
4. Replace government sponsored abstinence education with age-appropriate sex education (65,350)
5. Funding for bullet trains and light rail (65,100)
6. The permanent closure of all torture facilities (61,250)
7. Revoke the George W. Bush tax cuts for the top 1 % (57,080)
8. Get insurance companies out of health care (55,080)
9. Revoke the tax exempt status of the Church of Scientology (52,470)
10. Bring back the Constitution (50,160)
-Noel Brinkerhoff
 
Citizen’s Briefing Book (White House) (PDF)
 

Comments

Vince 10 years ago
Hey Noel, this top ten list is fantastic, thanks for posting it. Cannibus should be totally legal, look at the Netherlands for a good example. Anyone can post their own list to our site http://www.toptentopten.com/. The coolest feature is you can let other people vote on the rankings of your list.
matt 10 years ago
Legal or not I am going to smoke cannabis. I would prefer it would be legal to buy, sell, grow, use and possess but the current laws do not prevent me from buying, possessing and using and they make it a bit harder to grow as I have to grow out in the woods as opposed to my balcony.
MICHAEL J PAGELS 10 years ago
HAVE WE NOT LEARNED FORM PROHIBAITION OF ALCOHOL? FIRST, LEGALIZATIN OF MARIJUANA WOULD PUT A STOP TO MUCH OF GANGS AS DID LEGALIZATION OF LIQUOR. SECOND, BILLIONS OF DOLLARS WOULD BE SAVED ON POLICE LAWYERS PRISONS, AND BILLIONS COULD BE MADE BY TAXES A DOUBLE WIN. THIRD IT CAN HELP THE SICK!
John 10 years ago
Quote: "Responsible Adult - 5/13/2009 11:08:05 AM ...I'm sick of the Gateway Drug Argument..." I agree. Been smoking it from age 16 to 62. I say it's the other way around: alcohol was my 'gateway' to smoking pot. Now that I'm 'legal', I don't smoke more, just paranoid less.
Kevin McGowan 10 years ago
The latest Zogby poll shows that 52% of Americans favor legalization. This is a democracy and should be treated as one -- listen to the people. The prohibition has failed, it's time for a new direction. The dismissal of legalization as a economical benefit is inexcusable when economists agree it is.
Responsible Adult 10 years ago
Legalize it. Treat it like alcohol - plain & simple. For the 1st 6 months it's legal, it will be exciting. After that, the people who smoke, will probably smoke the same amount the do now. And the people that don't smoke, won't. Not much will change. And I'm sick of the Gateway Drug Argument.

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