Medical Marijuana Proposal Abandoned 

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  Medical Marijuana Proposal Abandoned 

Posted by CN Staff on May 24, 2011 at 12:42:02 PT
By Jonathan Martin, Seattle Times Staff Reporter 
Source: Seattle Times 

Seattle, WA -- A legislative effort to expand and clarify the state medical marijuana law has ended for the year, potentially spelling the end — for now — of dispensaries that have boomed throughout the state.Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle, announced Tuesday that her yearlong effort to reform the 1998 voter-approved medical marijuana law was over. She got a landmark bill through the session only to see Gov. Chris Gregoire mostly veto it in April.
"By far, this represents the greatest disappointment of my legislative career," she said in a statement.King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg said that dispensaries, which had operated in a "legal gray area," will clearly be illegal because of language Gregoire did not veto."The commercial dispensaries jumped the gun, and are out aggressively marketing their services. Whatever gray area used to exist to allow that is gone now. They are clearly illegal as of July," when the new law takes effect, he said on Tuesday.Satterberg said he prefers to use civil actions instead of criminal sanctions to address dispensaries, but said his office would closely review criminal cases brought by local police."What happened in Olympia is a significant step backward. It puts cops and prosecutors back in the business of making the medical marijuana law work. I don't think that's fundamentally the law that cops and prosecutors should be in. It should be a medical issue, not a law-enforcement issue," he said.Cities, police and patients had sought legislation this year to clarify who can have medical marijuana and how they can access it. Patient groups sought arrest protection and legalized dispensaries; police sought a statewide patient registry and criminalization of dispensaries; and cities simply sought clarity on ways to approach the booming dispensary market.How the new law is going to be enforced is likely going to vary. The City of Tacoma has sent cease-and-desist letters to 42 dispensaries, but held off enforcement pending the Legislative session. Tacoma city spokesman Rob McNair-Huff said it is unclear how the city council is going to proceed.Kent City Attorney Tom Brubaker said the city would decide how to deal with its four or five dispensaries soon."We've told these dispensaries that they're illegal, but haven't taken any stiff enforcement action" pending action in Olympia, he said. "I'd just as soon they weren't in my town."Source: Seattle Times (WA)Author: Jonathan Martin, Seattle Times Staff ReporterPublished: May 24, 2011Copyright: 2011 The Seattle Times CompanyContact: opinion seatimes.comWebsite: Medical Marijuana  Archives 

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Comment #10 posted by runruff on May 25, 2011 at 05:50:09 PT
They are circling the wagons folks.
Loosening of drug laws, in particular cannabis, spells the end of the DEA and the beginning of the end of industry as we know it.The question is; how far will they take their fight? How much of the environment will suffer? How many will loose their freedoms? How many will loose their lives?If you read about the illegal use of the FBI and the DEA, the feds now use them both for their foreign espionage and other covert industrial operations. They have become the feds "useful" bad boys. I am afraid we may not see the end of them soon.Yes Obama has been good to the VA. Probably anyone who had been elected in this time would have necessarily been good to the VA during this time of otherwise abusing our military on illegal wars. To have not been good to the VA would make it harder to recruit new boys and girls to throw into the corporate expansion wars. Obama is a political animal like the rest. Who has he saved from corporate and political tyranny?
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Comment #9 posted by afterburner on May 25, 2011 at 05:27:00 PT
O'Bama visits Ireland, claims his family lost the apostrophe somewhere along the way:Posted on Wed, May. 25, 2011. 
In visit to Ireland, O'Bama seeks to reverse U.S. notions of race.
By John Timpane, 
Inquirer Staff Writer, Canada is shifting gears:Marijuana makes way for new grow opportunity.
 Longtime supplier to pot growers reinvents itself to satisfy demand for legal herbs.
 By Randy Shore, Vancouver Sun May 24, 2011. Be the first to post a comment'Agenda for crime reform'.
 Kathryn Blaze Carlson, National Post · May 21, 2011 | Last Updated: May 21, 2011 3:17 AM ET
The Conservative government's omnibus crime legislation, due ''within 100 days,'' will mark a watershed moment in Canadian legal history, imposing many controversial changes to how police and the courts operate, experts say.The bill is sweeping in scale and scope: It is expected to usher new mandatory minimum sentences for drug crimes -growing five marijuana plants to sell the drug would automatically bring six months in jail -and for certain sexual offences against children. It will expand police powers online without court orders, reintroduce controversial aspects of the Anti-Terrorism Act that expired in 2007, end house arrest for serious crimes and impact young offenders and their privacy.
} snipped.
more... Locked in litigation.
 Medical marijuana users have sued the government because they believe the system doesn't work. In many cases, the court has agreed. Yet there's a reluctance in Ottawa to loosen laws any further.
 By Ian Mulgrew, Vancouver Sun Columnist May 24, 2011
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on May 24, 2011 at 19:52:10 PT

There are no guarantees that Obama will be re-elected but if he isn't I will tune out and quit even caring. There isn't anyone that could do a better job then he has done is these very difficult times. If 4 years is all it will be I am grateful for the 4 years.What Obama has been doing for Vietnam Veterans that were exposed to Agent Orange is enough for me.
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Comment #7 posted by HempWorld on May 24, 2011 at 19:08:23 PT

Dear FoM,
Obama is not going to do anything until at the end of his 2nd term. But I don't think he is going to be re-elected at this time.
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on May 24, 2011 at 18:46:28 PT

Obama won't change the law. He isn't allowed to do that. He is not a dictator but an elected President. If the law can't be changed then raids will continue like they have been for years.
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Comment #5 posted by HempWorld on May 24, 2011 at 17:41:39 PT

Sorry to rain on your (our) parade ...
Cannabis will NEVER be rescheduled as long as the DEA is in charge! Do you really think the DEA is going to give up their easy money? NEVER Not even with Obama, who did not close Guantanamo or end the wars or end the medical marijuana patients persecution by the DEA and others.
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on May 24, 2011 at 16:41:40 PT

You are correct about the VA. That should help in changing the Schedule since that is Federal. 
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Comment #3 posted by dongenero on May 24, 2011 at 14:38:48 PT

one more....
The Veterans Administration recognizes the use of medical marijuana as well.Talk about "the emperor has no clothes"...sheeshThe drug schedule is a joke, along the lines of Homeland Security color bars......don't get any ideas DEA.
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Comment #2 posted by dongenero on May 24, 2011 at 14:33:39 PT

Don't forget Federal indications of medical use
"One of the requirements for maintaining a drug in Schedule I of the CSA is that it must not have accepted medical use in the United States.""Marijuana's medical use is now accepted by 16 states (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington) as well as the District of Columbia."Not to mention the fact that the US government sends out pounds of marijuana each month, grown at U of Miss., to participants in the Feds IND program and has for decades. Not to mention the fact that the US Govt. holds patents on the use of cannabinoids for medical purposes. Not to mention the fact that the US Govt's, Cancer Institute web site has a multi-page section on the use of cannabis in the treatment of cancer. hello....Court of Appeals....anybody paying attention?
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on May 24, 2011 at 14:23:04 PT

Press Release From
Federal Court Asked To Compel Decision in Marijuana Scheduling Action***By DrugScience.orgPublished: Tuesday, May. 24, 2011Washington -- /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A coalition of advocacy groups and patients yesterday filed suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to compel the Obama Administration to formally respond to a 9-year-old petition to have marijuana rescheduled under the provisions of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).Relief sought from the Court of Appeals would enable states with medical marijuana laws to expedite efforts to change marijuana's status under federal law and narrow the widening gap between state and federal law. For example, Washington Governor Chris Gregoire has expressed interest in having all the states that allow medical marijuana to ask the federal government to reclassify the drug. If the Court of Appeals grants the relief requested by the CRC, Washington and other medical marijuana states would have the opportunity to seek rescheduling now in expedited proceedings, rather than wait years for a new rescheduling action to ripen. The Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis (CRC) argues that marijuana no longer satisfies the requirements of a Schedule I prohibited substance and that federal law requires that it be reclassified. President Obama's Administration has had ample time to review the Coalition's administrative petition but has refused to take final action, violating the requirements of the Administrative Procedures Act which requires action within a reasonable period of time. One of the requirements for maintaining a drug in Schedule I of the CSA is that it must not have accepted medical use in the United States. Marijuana's medical use is now accepted by 16 states (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington) as well as the District of Columbia.According to Jon Gettman, coordinator of the CRC, "Marijuana has accepted medical use in the United States, it has a lower abuse potential than drugs like heroin, methamphetamine, and cocaine, and it is safe for use under medical supervision. All of these characteristics are well-documented scientifically and legally. Federal law requires the Obama Administration to reclassify marijuana.""The federal government's strategy has been delay, delay, delay," said Joe Elford, Chief Counsel of ASA and lead counsel on the writ. "It is far past time for the government to answer our rescheduling petition, but unfortunately we've been forced to go to court in order to get resolution." The writ of mandamus filed accuses the government of unreasonable delay in violation of the Administrative Procedures Act. A formal rejection of the CRC petition would enable the group to take the issue to the federal courts. Gettman believes that, "The Obama Administration's refusal to act on this petition is an irresponsible stalling tactic; it denies us due process under the law and, more shamefully, it continues to deny countless patients a chance to use current law to seek legal access to marijuana for medical use."The CSA classifies marijuana and other drugs in various schedules. Marijuana is currently classified as a Schedule I substance, designating it as having a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medical use in the United States, and a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision. The CSA provides a procedure to have scheduling classifications changed in response to scientific research and other relevant factors, such as recognition of a drug's accepted medical use and its dependence liability as compared to other controlled substances. Schedule I substances include heroin, GHB and MDMA (ecstasy). Cocaine and oxycodone are both Schedule II substances, which allows for severely restricted medical use while maintaining the assertion that its abuse may lead to severe physiological and psychological dependence. Marinol® a synthetic form of THC (marijuana) that is widely prescribed medically is a Schedule III substance designating that it has a currently accepted medical use in the United States and that's its abuse is associated with only a moderate dependence liability.The members of the Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis include the American Alliance for Medical Cannabis, Americans for Safe Access (ASA), California NORML, the Drug Policy Forum of Texas, High Times, Los Angeles Cannabis Resource Center (Cooperative), the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), New Mexicans for Compassionate Use, Oakland Cannabis Buyers Cooperative, and Patients Out of Time. Further information:Timeline of Efforts to Reschedule Marijuana:• 1995 – 2001 – Prior attempt by Jon Gettman to reschedule cannabis ended with a rejection of the petition by then DEA head Asa Hutchinson
• 2002 – Coalition for Rescheduling files new petition to DEA to reschedule marijuana
• 2003 – 2006 – HHS reviews all science relevant and makes recommendation to DEA 
• 2006 – Present – Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis awaits final decision by DEA.Writ filed: rescheduling petition: Information: http://www.drugscience.orgCopyright: 2011 PRNewswireURL:
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