Alert: Senate Judiciary Committee Voting on John Walters Nomination Wednesday 10/5/01

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The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on the John Walters drug czar nomination on Wednesday morning next week (10/10/01). If your state has a Senator who sits on that committee, then your help is urgently needed. Please call or fax your Senator and ask him or her to vote "no" on this bad appointment.

Previously we have asked people to visit our web site to send e-mail to the Senate. At this stage, we really need phone calls or faxes. Below you will find a list of Judiciary Committee members by state. Please look through this list and see if your state is represented on it, and if so, please call your Senator today or on Monday to voice your opposition to the John Walters nomination for drug czar. Following is the list of Senators with their phone numbers, followed by our original alert on this subject; look up your state on the list, or visit to find local contact info or fax numbers.

ALABAMA: Senator Jeff Sessions (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-4124
Birmingham: (205) 731-1500
Huntsville: (256) 533-0979
Mobile: (334) 414-3083
Montgomery: (334) 265-9507

ARIZONA: Senator Jon Kyl (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-4521
Phoenix: (602) 840-1891
Tucson: (520) 575-8633

CALIFORNIA: Senator Dianne Feinstein (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-3841
San Francisco: (415) 393-0707

DELAWARE: Senator Joseph Biden (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-5042
Wilmington: (302) 573-6345
Milford: (302) 424-8090

KANSAS: Senator Sam Brownback (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-6521
Topeka: (785) 233-2503
Overland Park: (913) 492-6378
Wichita: (316) 264-8066
Garden City: (316) 275-1124
Pittsburg: (316) 231-6040

KENTUCKY: Senator Mitch McConnell (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-2541
Paducah: (270) 442-4554
Bowling Green: (270) 781-1673
Louisville: (502) 582-6304
Fort Wright: (859) 578-0188
London: (606) 864-2026
Lexington: (859) 224-8286

ILLINOIS: Senator Richard Durbin (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-2152
Chicago: (312) 353-4952
Springfield: (217) 492-4062
Marion: (618) 998-8812

IOWA: Senator Charles Grassley (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-3744
Cedar Rapids: (319) 363-6832
Council Bluffs: (712) 322-7103
Davenport: (319) 322-4331
Des Moines: (515) 284-4890
Sioux City: (712) 233-1860
Waterloo: (319) 232-6657

MASSACHUSETTS: Senator Edward Kennedy (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-4543
Boston: (617) 565-3170

NEW YORK: Senator Charles Schumer (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-6542

NORTH CAROLINA: Senator John Edwards (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-3154
Raleigh: (919) 856-4245

OHIO: Senator Mike DeWine (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-2315
Xenia: (937) 376-3080
Cincinnati: (513) 763-8260
Cleveland: (216) 522-7272
Columbus: (614) 469-5186
Marietta: (740) 373-2317
Toledo: (419) 259-7536

PENNSYLVANIA: Senator Arlen Specter (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-4254
Philadelphia: (215) 597-7200
Pittsburgh: (412) 644-3400
Harrisburg: (717) 782-3951
Erie: (814) 453-3010
Allentown: (610) 434-1444
Scranton: (717) 346-2006
Wilkes-Barre: (717) 826-6265

SOUTH CAROLINA: Senator Strom Thurmond (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-5972
Columbia: (803) 765-5494
Aiken: (803) 649-2591
Charleston: (843) 727-4282
Florence: (843) 662-8873

UTAH: Senator Orrin Hatch (R)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-5251
Salt Lake City: (801) 524-4380
Cedar City: (435) 586-8435
Provo: (801) 375-7881
Ogden: (801) 625-5672
St. George: (435) 634-1795

VERMONT: Senator Patrick Leahy (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-4242
Burlington: (802) 863-2525 or (800) 642-3193
Montpelier: (802) 229-0569

WASHINGTON: Senator Maria Cantwell (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-3441
Seattle: (206) 220-6400
Spokane: (509) 353-2507
Vancouver: (360) 696-7838
toll-free statewide: (888) 648-7328

(Wisconsin residents should call both of your Senators:)

WISCONSIN: Senator Herb Kohl (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-5653
Milwaukee: (414) 297-4451 or (800) 247-5645
Madison: (608) 264-5338
Eau Claire: (715) 832-8424
Appleton: (920) 738-1640
LaCrosse: (608) 796-0045

WISCONSIN: Senator Russell Feingold (D)
Washington, DC: (202) 224-5323
Middleton: (608) 828-1200
Milwaukee: (414) 276-7282
La Crosse: (608) 782-5585
Wausau: (715) 848-5660
Green Bay: (920) 465-7508

Our original action alert follows:

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Wrong Man for the Job: Oppose John Walters Nomination

The Judiciary Committee of the US Senate is next week voting on the nomination of John Walters for the office of Director of the US Office of National Drug Control Policy (the "drug czar"). DRCNet strongly opposes this nomination, and asks you to contact your Senators and ask them to vote NO on it. Please visit to send e-mail or faxes to the Senate. Even more importantly, when you are done, please call your two Senators on the phone as well -- you can reach them via the Congressional Switchboard at (202) 224-3121, and use the tell-a-friend form on our site or forward this alert to spread the word.

John Walters hold views on drug policy that verge on the fanatical. Perhaps most disturbingly, Walters has enthusiastically praised the Peruvian military's practice of shooting down aircraft suspected of being used by drug traffickers. Earlier this year, two American missionaries were killed in such a shoot-down, inevitable casualties of an extraordinarily reckless and immoral practice that violates international law.

In 1996, Walters testified before Congress in opposition to the Sentencing Commission's recommendation to lower federal crack cocaine penalties to the same level as powder cocaine. Walters has dismissed the problem of racial bias in drug enforcement as an "urban myth," despite overwhelming evidence that such bias is rampant; for example, African Americans make up only 13% of the nation's drug users, yet account for more than 70% of incarcerations for drug possession. His recommendation on cocaine penalties was made despite a consensus among serious observers of criminal justice that powder cocaine enforcement is also carried out in a racially discriminatory fashion.

As Deputy Director of ONDCP during the previous Bush administration, Walters favored incarceration over drug treatment and education. He has lobbied Congress for stiffer penalties for nonviolent drug offenders, and opposed state laws exempting medical marijuana users from criminal penalties.

In 1996, Walters coauthored a paper entitled "The Clinton Administration's Continuing Retreat in the War on Drugs." In truth, however, the Clinton Administration escalated the drug war, imprisoning more people for drug offenses than during the preceding Reagan and Bush administrations combined. To characterize the harsh Clinton drug war record as a "retreat" is to elevate partisan politics over truthful discussion and to show a deep disrespect to the American people on an issue of the greatest importance.

In short, the Walters drug record is one of propaganda, extremism and disregard for issues of racial equality. John Walters is unfit to lead the nation on drug policy, and should be rejected by the US Congress. Whether we can defeat his nomination or not, raising our voices in protest now will put pressure on the administration to moderate its drug policies.

The Walters nomination has been criticized by mainstream outlets such as the New York Times and the Economist, even by the conservative flagship magazine National Review. Visit to access this and other information and to send a message to the Senate against this retrograde nomination -- and please call or fax your two US Senators and urge them to vote against the confirmation of John Walters as Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Visit to find out how to reach them, or call the Congressional Switchboard at (202) 224-3121. Time is of the essence!

-- END --
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Issue #205, 10/5/01 Editorial: What Is It About Opium? | Politicians Exploiting Drug-Terror Link | Interview: John C. Thompson, Mackenzie Institute, Toronto | Drug War Budgets Unaffected by September Attacks | Wisconsin Lawmakers Seek Tougher Ecstasy Penalties, Would Make Possession a Felony | Supersnitch Scandal: Mistakes Were Made, Says DEA Chief Hutchinson -- But No One Made Them | Violence in the Chapare, Bolivia -- Two Sustain Bullet Wounds | Alert: Senate Judiciary Committee Voting on John Walters Nomination Wednesday | Other Alerts: HEA, Ecstasy Bill, Mandatory Minimums, Medical Marijuana | Salvia Divinorum Defense Fund Established | Errata: Who's a Drug-Runnin' Terrorist? | The Reformer's Calendar

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