U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions wants congress to repeal federal medical marijuana protections from 2014. The Rohrabacher-Farr amendment prohibits federal funds use for prevention of states “from implementing their own State laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana.”
Sessions wrote a letter regarding the nationwide disablement of medical marijuana protections, Bangor Daily News reports. Sessions claims the amendment “inhibits [the Justice Department’s] authority to enforce the Controlled Substances Act.” Sessions’ comments completely contradict current research.
Sessions says, in the letter, that, “I believe it would be unwise for Congress to restrict the discretion of the Department to fund particular prosecutions, particularly in the midst of a historic drug epidemic and potentially long-term uptick in violent crime. The Department must be in a position to use all laws available to combat the transnational drug organizations and dangerous drug traffickers who threaten American lives.”
America’s drug epidemic involves opiates and other street drugs, not marijuana. The National Institute on Drug Abuse acknowledges growing research showing that opiate overdoses and deaths decreased in states where medical marijuana is legal. Research also shows that a medical marijuana crackdown could make the opioid epidemic worse.
John Hudak of the Brookings Institution said that the letter “could appeal to rank-and-file members or to committee chairs in Congress in ways that could threaten the future of this Amendment.”
Hudak also called the content of the letter as a “scare tactic.”
Representative Dana Rohrabacher responded directly by saying, “Mr. Sessions stands athwart an overwhelming majority of Americans and even, sadly, against veterans and other suffering Americans who we now know conclusively are helped dramatically by medical marijuana.”
During President Donald Trump’s campaign, he voiced his support for state-level medical marijuana regulations. He provided notions that states can do what they want with individual medical marijuana policy.
Hudak said this “should make everyone openly question whether candidate Trump’s rhetoric and the White House’s words on his support for medical marijuana was actually a lie to the American public on an issue that garners broad, bipartisan support.”
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