Just How Mainstream is Marijuana? 
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Just How Mainstream is Marijuana? 
Posted by CN Staff on February 17, 2017 at 13:38:45 PT
By Christopher Ingraham
Source: Washington Post
Washington, D.C. -- Time to dispel any doubts you may still have that marijuana reform is truly a mainstream political issue. This week, a bipartisan group of U.S. representatives formed the first-ever "Congressional Cannabis Caucus" to work on legislation related to marijuana legalization and regulation.Democrats Earl Blumenauer of Oregon and Jared Polis of Colorado teamed up with Republicans Dana Rohrabacher of California and Don Young of Alaska to form the caucus. Not coincidentally, all four representatives hail from states where recreational marijuana use is legal.
"The federal government’s decades-long approach to marijuana is a colossal, cruel joke, and most Americans know it," Rohrabacher said in a news release announcing the formation of the group Thursday. "Not only have incalculable amounts of taxpayers’ dollars been wasted, but countless lives have been unnecessarily disrupted and even ruined by misguided law enforcement."The group didn't lay out specific legislative objectives, but the lawmakers said that there is a need for explicit rules that square federal law, which strictly prohibits marijuana use, with the growing number of state laws that allow for medical and recreational use."Because of the conflicts between Federal and State law, marijuana-related issues are no longer theoretical — they are real, and they are affecting real people in Alaska and across the country," Young said in a written statement. "I look forward to working with the Congressional Cannabis Caucus to educate my colleagues in the House on the issues we are facing in Alaska, and hopefully to also develop solutions to these problems."Earlier this month, Rohrabacher introduced a measure called the Respect State Marijuana Laws Act of 2017, which would protect people from marijuana-related prosecutions under the Controlled Substances Act, provided that they were acting in compliance with state laws. The bill has drawn bipartisan co-sponsorship.Voters and lawmakers in many states have been liberalizing their marijuana laws since the 1990s, sometimes drastically so. Most have opted to scale back the strict marijuana prohibitions of an earlier era, adopting regulatory structures that allow for everything from limited access to certain marijuana-derived chemicals for medical use all the way up to full-blown commercial legalization and regulation.But at the federal level, marijuana policy remains essentially unchanged from the early 1970s. The plant is considered a Schedule 1 controlled substance, with what federal authorities call a "high potential for abuse" and "no currently accepted medical use." Under President Barack Obama, the administration reaffirmed this stance as recently as last summer.The disconnect between state and federal laws leaves many marijuana users, patients, businesses and researchers stuck in an uncomfortable gray area between the two. Federal authorities could technically sweep in at any minute, shutting down businesses and arresting marijuana users even in places where it's legal under state law.That this hasn't happened on any significant scale since Colorado and Washington state legalized marijuana in 2012 is partly because federal authorities lack the manpower to do so. Most drug enforcement is handled at the state level, by state and local police. This fact was explicitly acknowledged by Obama's Justice Department in what came to be known as the Cole Memo, which laid out a federal policy of noninterference with state marijuana laws provided certain guidelines, like preventing underage people from using marijuana, were adhered to.But a memo is just a voluntary statement. It doesn't have the force of law, and the new administration could choose to adhere to it or ignore it, depending on its own enforcement priorities. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has so far been circumspect when it comes to marijuana enforcement questions.Christopher Ingraham writes about politics, drug policy and all things data. He previously worked at the Brookings Institution and the Pew Research Center. Source: Washington Post (DC)Author: Christopher IngrahamPublished: February 17, 2017Copyright: 2017 Washington Post CompanyContact: letters Website: URL: -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #3 posted by MikeEEEEE on February 18, 2017 at 07:47:16 PT
Land of the stupids update
What will the asshole do this upcoming week?
By the way, if you voted for trump, this update is mostly directed at you.From the article below: 
"Staffers on Trump's transition team told The Hill in January that the president was preparing dramatic budget cuts, including to the departments of Justice, State, Energy, Transportation, and Commerce, with some programs slated entirely for elimination."Maybe one good thing:
"Some targets, like the Office of National Drug Control Policy, are notable in their opposition to some of the president's own talking points"Full article:
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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on February 17, 2017 at 16:19:55 PT
"Sessions was considered one of the most conservative members of the U.S. Senate. As a senator, he was noted for his opposition to illegal immigration and advocacy of reducing legal immigration.He supported the major legislative efforts of the George W. Bush administration, including the 2001 and 2003 tax cut packages, the Iraq War, and a proposed national amendment to ban same-sex marriage.He opposed the establishment of the Troubled Asset Relief Program, the 2009 stimulus bill, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act.As the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, he opposed all three of President Obama's nominees for the Supreme Court."From This does not bode so well, I'm afraid, IMHO! Dana you got your work cut out!
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Comment #1 posted by HempWorld on February 17, 2017 at 16:16:10 PT
Go Dana Rohrabacher!
A good man!And a great effort, just what's needed, IMHO.The only problem, the guy from Alabama... ?He needs to be 'educated' and that's an unknown.How long is this going to take, if ever?
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