Virgin Megastore mogul Richard Branson may be the fourth richest person in Great Britain, but even he couldn’t buy a joint from President Obama last week while attending a White House state dinner for British Prime Minister David Cameron.
The next day, at the D.C. office of The Atlantic magazine, Branson freely admitted: “I asked him [Obama] if I could have a spliff … But they didn’t have any.”
Branson went on to tell his impromptu audience that he was “joking” – but it wasn’t clear from the reportage by Politico whether he was joking about even asking Obama in the first place or that he did ask, but was just kidding the former pot-smoking President.
Branson, whose estimated net worth is roughly $4.2 billion (in U.S. dollars), has long been an outspoken advocate of cannabis legalization, joining fellow billionaire George Soros as two of the very few monetary monarchs that have demonstrated the courage to speak out against pot prohibition.
Branson also has disclosed that he partakes of pot occasionally and recently served on an Atlantic panel dubbed “Benchmarking the War on Drugs.”
It should be noted that Prime Minister Cameron, in whose honor the dinner was being held, also has an alleged history with marijuana. In 2005, when running for Leader of the Opposition (the political party with the second-highest number of seats in the House of Commons), Cameron was queried repeatedly about previous dalliances with cannabis and cocaine.
While not coming out and openly stating he used to get high, Cameron said that everyone is allowed to “err and stray” in their past. Another tacit admission came with this comment: “I did lots of things before I came into politics which I shouldn’t have done. We all did.”
So between Cameron, Obama and Branson, that sure was a lot of powerful ex- and current pot smokers in one room – yet with absolutely no weed to show for it.