A Russian presidential candidate wants to remove the iron curtain around marijuana in the world's largest country. On Monday, former reality TV star Ksenia Sobchak — a.k.a. the 'Russian Paris Hilton' — called on the government to repeal cannabis prohibition in Russia.
"I myself don't use it, but I don't drink vodka by the bottle, either," Sobchak said according to a report from the Moscow-based newspaper Lenta.ru. "I don't really understand why drinking vodka in enormous quantities is considered normal in our country, but using marijuana is not, though it has far fewer consequences, even from the perspective of crime statistics."
Even more controversial than casting shade at Russia's national liquor is Sobchak's decision to run against Vladimir Putin, who is almost assuredly going to win the "election" next March. We're wrapping scare quotes around the e-word because many pundits and commentators argue that the proceeding is really a charade. Sort of like the WWE wrestling of politics since the fights are staged and the outcomes are pre-determined (like when Hulk Hogan beat up the flag of the USSR).
In fact, other political parties have decided not to run presidential candidates to emphasize that the vote in March is a sham since Putin's reelection is all but inevitable. So Sobchak is facing pushback both from Putin as well as other parties who are criticizing her for breaking rank on the election boycott.
But if nothing else, her candidacy will raise the profile of the cannabis legalization movement in Russia. Sobchak is the 10th highest paid Russian celebrity, and she has over 1.5 million followers on Twitter. So if anyone can repatriate the strain Russian Rocket Fuel, it's probably her.
For more on Sobchak, who has been called the 'stiletto in Putin's side,' check out this video.