Feds won’t sue to reverse state marijuana laws

The Obama administration on Thursday said it would not sue to undo laws legalizing marijuana in 20 states, although it will monitor operations in those states to make sure they do not run afoul of several enforcement priorities.

Washington and Colorado recently began allowing small amounts of marijuana to be used recreationally, while 18 other states and the District of Columbia permit the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

In a phone call on Thursday afternoon, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. explained the government’s “trust but verify” approach to Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington and Gov. John W. Hickenlooper of Colorado, a Justice Department official said.

In a memo sent to federal prosecutors nationwide on Thursday, James M. Cole, the deputy attorney general, laid out eight priority enforcement areas. They are aimed at preventing marijuana sales to children, illegal cartel activity, interstate trafficking of marijuana, and violence and accidents involving the drug…

Mr. Cole is scheduled to testify on Sept. 10 at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing focused on clarifying the administration’s stance on the state laws. Mr. Holder was also invited, but he is not expected to attend.

Senator Patrick J. Leahy, Democrat of Vermont and the chairman of the committee, said the administration should respect the state laws.

“It is important, especially at a time of budget constraints, to determine whether it is the best use of federal resources to prosecute the personal or medicinal use of marijuana in states that have made such consumption legal,” Mr. Leahy said. “I believe that these state laws should be respected. At a minimum, there should be guidance about enforcement from the federal government.”

President Obama still doesn’t support changing federal laws regulating marijuana, laws which treat cannabis as a dangerous substance with no medical value. Apparently, he still values the hypocrite and idjit vote critical only to Republicans.

He’s also a politician of sufficient cunning to realize that history is catching up with the kind of stupid politicians who passed laws criminalizing marijuana in the first place. Just like fools who went along with regulations restricting the civil rights of minorities. Those chickens are coming home to roost on a daily basis.

3 thoughts on “Feds won’t sue to reverse state marijuana laws

  1. drugsandotherthings says:

    Ah yes, the memo from Assitant AG James Cole. Reminiscent of the infamous memo from Cole in 2009 regarding medical cannabis. Which of course was followed by DEA raids. And IRS harassment- from pressuring banks and credit card companies to not do business with “legal” dispensaries to refusal to accept legitimate business deductions of dispensaries (after years of happily cashing their tax checks), to targeting property owners of legal dispensaries and threatening seizure of said properties, to harassment over federal drug laws prohibiting being near schools/parks- even in cases where the dispensaries came first (and despite these laws not applying to pharmacies that distribute drugs such as oxycontin).

    So, I guess, we will see more of the same thuggery…

    A shame since the placement of cannabis in schedule 1 (or arguaby- any of the existing schedules) violates the very structure of the law. Cannabis is neither highly addictive nor lacking in medical use- the very requirement for Schedule 1. (even cocaine is a step down at schedule II ). And of course- after the Nixon administration used powers to “emergency schedule” cannabis, the scientific/medical panel set up to acess the drug issued their report several years later- calling for decriminilization.

    ahhh…reefer madness

    • eideard says:

      Absolutely right.

      Here in NM, we are the poster child for thoroughly regulated medical marijuana distribution with oversight and strict enforcement. And if you’re a licensed grower or distributor you can walk into a locally-owned, federally-licensed community bank – and you cannot open a bank account of any kind.

      Contemptible federal rules from an opportunist, cowardly government.

  2. Mark says:

    Lets face it. The corporatocracy benefits immensely from ganja’s illegality and its in no way in the interests of President or Party to change this.

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