President Donald Trump has appointed a lot of questionable officials to major posts in his administration. Whether it's someone who's against environmental regulations to lead the EPA or appointing a guy who said he wanted to eliminate the Department of Energy to be the Secretary of Energy. But his choice as his new drug czar actually makes sense, in that he's an anti-marijuana politician who will most likely continue Trump's attacks on cannabis.
Congressman Tom Marino has been selected as President Trump's choice to lead the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, informally known as the "drug czar." Marino was originally supposed to take the position last spring, but his mother developed a serious heart condition and he withdrew from consideration in May. But he's now returned to the position.
Marino served as a U.S. Attorney before being elected as a congressman in Pennsylvania in 2010. He was also one of the earliest Congressmen to support Trump during his 2016 presidential campaign.
Despite his possible qualifications, Marino does have a somewhat controversial past that could prevent him from getting confirmed. Marino has consistently voted against marijuana legislation in all forms, whether it's allowing military veterans to use it medicinally or protecting states' that have already legalized it. But that's really par for the course with Republicans. He also supported legislation last year that would prevent the DEA from preventing pharmacies from over-dispensing certain medications. And he's previously advocated for drug addicts to be incarcerated in "hospitals-slash-prisons."
But Marino's biggest controversy involves his time as a district attorney when he tried to get a friend's conviction for selling cocaine expunged from his record. On top of that, Marino served as a U.S. Attorney and provided a reference for a convicted felon who wanted to open a casino. In fact, Marino's office was actively investigating the convicted felon at the time of the reference. Marino resigned shortly after this was made public, and actually went on to work for that convicted felon.
So Trump's new drug czar thinks marijuana should be illegal, but is totally cool with cocaine dealers getting their records expunged and convicted felons running casinos.