AG Sessions to Congress: Let Me Prosecute Cannabis Patients

A recently revealed memo from AG Jeff Sessions urging Congress to overturn restrictions on DOJ prosecution of state-legal medical cannabis operations is heating up already simmering uncertainty surrounding the nascent cannabis industry.

Like his boss Donald Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is making headlines by making bombastic statements. But beyond the noise, Sessions has yet to accomplish much during his first few months in office.

For instance, he has yet to follow through with any of his many vague-yet-ominous threats to crack down on the country’s burgeoning legal marijuana industry. The main reason why is that Sessions —even if he had enough DEA agents (he does not) and even if he were to fill many of his vacant federal prosecutor positions (he has not) — can’t do anything about it.

Read more at Cannabis Now

Congress’ 2017 Budget Plan Reauthorizes Protections For State Medical Cannabis Programs

Spending legislation approved in the past 24 hours by members of the US House and Senate reauthorizes language protecting state-sanctioned medical marijuana and industrial hemp programs. The President is expected to sign the budget bill into law imminently.

Specifically, Section 537 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, states that no federal funds may be appropriated to “prevent any [state] from implementing their own laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of medical marijuana..” That language, initially passed by Congress in 2014, is now known as the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment.

A similarly worded amendment protecting state-sponsored hemp programs was also reauthorized.

Read more at NORML

Last Chance To Protect Medical Marijuana Patients and Providers From Jeff Sessions

Today is the final day that Congress has to pass a short-term budget to fund the federal government and it’s up to us to make sure that lawmakers reauthorize the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment. This critical amendment stops Jeff Sessions’ Department of Justice from targeting state-sanctioned medical marijuana patients, growers, caregivers, and providers.

Click here now to tell your member of Congress to Stop Sessions from going after marijuana.

94% of US voters support legal access to medical marijuana. Congress needs to understand that this is a mandate that is non-negotiable.

Read more at NORML

How Trump’s War on Weed Could Start on Saturday (And Why It Probably Won’t)

The most important Congressional action on cannabis — ever — is set to expire this Friday at midnight; chances are, you won’t even notice.

Depending on who you ask, the next few Saturdays will see the cannabis industry waking up to just another day in Donald Trump’s America — or the beginning of the end.

Ongoing squabbles in Congress mean the country is veering towards a temporary shutdown of the federal government. Unless lawmakers can agree on a new federal spending bill, the nation will run out of money and the government will shut down: National parks will close, in-process government loans will be frozen, and all “nonessential” government employees will be sent home.

Read more at Cannabis Now

420: Take Action to End Prohibition!

Happy 420 to all!

Never in modern history has there existed greater public support for ending the nation’s nearly century-long experiment with marijuana prohibition and replacing it with regulation. The historic votes on Election Day 2016 — when a majority of voters in California, Massachusetts, Maine, and Nevada decided at the ballot box to regulate the adult use of marijuana, and several other states passed medical marijuana legalization laws — underscore this political reality., as do just-released polling data from CBS finding that a record high 61 percent of Americans say marijuana use should be legal.

It is time for the Congress, and your elected officials, to respect the will of the majority of American citizens.

Read more at NORML

Federal Legislation Introduced To Exclude Cannabis From The Controlled Substances Act

Representatives Tom Garrett (R-VA) and Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) have introduced bipartisan legislation in Congress to exclude marijuana from the federal Controlled Substances Act, thus providing states with the exclusive authority to regulate the plant how best they see fit.

The “Ending Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2017” removes the cannabis plant from the CSA so that it is no longer scheduled under federal law. This legislation gives states the power and flexibility to establish their own marijuana policies free from federal interference.

Individual states are “more than capable” of deciding their own cannabis policies, Rep. Garrett explained in a prepared statement.

Read more at NORML

Congressional Cannabis Caucus Kicks Off

In the face of legal uncertainty surrounding the future of federal enforcement of drug laws in decriminalized states, four legislators in the House of Representatives have formed a bipartisan cannabis caucus to lobby against federal interference in state-legal cannabusiness.

A majority of Americans have access to some form of marijuana, supplied by a booming nationwide industry worth billions of dollars that supports more than a hundred thousand jobs. Now that industry has the representation in U.S. Congress to match, after four lawmakers from key marijuana-supporting states announced the launch of the “Cannabis Caucus” on Thursday, Feb. 16.

Founding member Rep. Jared Polis, a Colorado Democrat who represents the Boulder area, told the Denver Post, “we’re really at the tipping point on marijuana reform,”

Read more at Cannabis Now