Category Archives: Federal

Today I introduced my bill to allow cannabis use in public housing…

Today I introduced my bill to allow cannabis use in public housing in DC and states where it’s legal for medical and/or recreational use. I signed the bill with Sondra Battle, a DC resident who lives in Section 8 housing and is prescribed cannabis to treat her fibromyalgia. pic.twitter.com/iyvUzpPMvA

— Eleanor Holmes Norton (@EleanorNorton) June 19, 2018

Congressional Bill Would Allow Marijuana Use in Public Housing

Published June 19, 2018  By  Kyle Jaeger

The signing ceremony took place with two members of the pro-legalization group DCMJ as well as Sondra Battle, a D.C. resident who uses cannabis to treat her fibromyalgia, according to a press release.

“I thank Sondra Battle and our DCMJ advocates for joining me to mark the introduction of what I am calling the ‘Sondra Battle Cannabis Fair Use Act,’” Norton said. “Residents like Sondra should not fear eviction from federally-assisted housing simply for using cannabis to treat their medical conditions.”

“Our bill recognized today’s realities and proven needs. Individuals who live in states where medical and/or recreational marijuana is legal, but live in federally-assisted housing, should have the same access to treatment as their neighbors.”

CONTINUE READING…

See the full text of Norton’s new bill below:

Marijuana Public Housing Bill by MarijuanaMoment on Scribd

Advertisements

Schumer to introduce bill to decriminalize marijuana

cannabis-sativa-plant-1404978607akl

By Sophie Tatum and Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN

Washington (CNN)   Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer plans to propose legislation decriminalizing marijuana on a federal level.

While Schumer, who was elected to the Senate two decades ago, has been supportive of medicinal marijuana, he has now “evolved” his thinking on recreational marijuana.

“The time has come to decriminalize marijuana,” the New York Democrat said in a statement Friday announcing his plans to introduce a new bill in the Senate.

“My thinking — as well as the general population’s views — on the issue has evolved, and so I believe there’s no better time than the present to get this done. It’s simply the right thing to do,” he said.

    Schumer announced the proposed legislation Thursday in an interview with “Vice News Tonight.”

    The senator told Vice News he had “seen too many people’s lives ruined because they had small amounts of marijuana and served time in jail much too long.”

    Trump promises GOP lawmaker to protect states’ marijuana rights

    Schumer further explained his decision in a Medium post Friday.

    “A staggering number of American citizens, a disproportionate number of whom are African American and Latino, continue to be arrested every day for something that most Americans agree should not be a crime,” Schumer wrote. “Meanwhile, those who are entering into the marijuana market in states that have legalized are set to make a fortune. This is not only misguided, but it undermines the basic principles of fairness and equal opportunity that are foundational to the American way of life.”

    According to Schumer’s office, under the new bill, marijuana would be removed from the list of substances classified under the Controlled Substances Act.

    Schumer’s legislation would leave in place decisions by states on how to regulate marijuana, the authority of federal law enforcement to penalize trafficking from states that have legalized the drug to those that have not, and federal regulation of marijuana advertising so children aren’t targeted.

    The bill also seeks to allocate funds for women and minority-owned marijuana businesses and public health research regarding the effects of THC, the main active chemical in marijuana.

    CNN’s Manu Raju contributed to this report.

    CONTINUE READING AND TO VIEW VIDEO…

    Bipartisan REFER Act Targets Sessions’ War On Cannabis In High Style

    Janet Burns ,

    In response to ongoing threats to the cannabis industry from the U.S. Department of Justice and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, lawmakers have prepared a bill meant to nip funding for federal interference in the bud.

    Last week, Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced a house resolution aimed “to protect states and individuals in states that have laws which permit the use of cannabis, and for other purposes,” entitled the Restraining Excessive Federal Enforcement and Regulations of Cannabis Act or REFER Act for short.

    Cosponsored by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Don Young (R-AK), Dina Titus (D-NV) and Jared Polis (D-CO), HR 4779 would create protections for both medical and recreational cannabis by barring federal funding for any efforts by the justice department to interfere in states’ laws when imposing its own.

    That includes efforts which seek to “detain, prosecute, sentence or initiate civil proceedings against an individual, business or property that is involved in the cultivation, distribution, possession, dispensation or the use of cannabis in accordance with the law or regulation of the state or unit of local government in which the individual is located,” according to lawmakers.

    Congresswoman Lee commented in a statement, “The federal government should respect the will of the voters in states that have voted to decriminalize cannabis. It’s time to stop wasting taxpayer money on the failed War on Drugs.”

    Lee continued, “I’m proud to introduce the REFER Act, which would prevent the Attorney General and others in the Trump Administration from stifling the budding cannabis industry. If the federal government chooses to interfere in these state matters, it’s up to Congress to prevent this harmful overreach.”

    In a release, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) praised the bill, which it helped Rep. Lee’s team within drafting the language.

    NORML noted that the appropriations-targeting bill would also block the federal government from taking punitive action against a financial institution “solely because [it] provides financial services to an entity” that is involved in marijuana-related activities that are sanctioned on the state level.

    Dependable financial services have topped the legal cannabis industry’s wish list for years, especially as federal pressure has continued driving many banks and types of investors to keep their distance.

    As a result, legal cannabis operations around the country have been forced to get creative with how they manage, protect or just pay taxes on their cash-heavy revenues and products; when police raids, robberies, or even natural calamities happen, the losses that businesses and individuals incur can often be permanent, leaving otherwise growing businesses hi

    Justin Strekal, Political Director for NORML, commented by phone that the nonprofit is “incredibly pleased at the leadership that Rep. Lee has shown” in the marijuana space, including through the REFER bill.

    “She truly understands that the federal government needs to get out of the way of states that are ending the absurd and racist policy of marijuana prohibition,” Strekal said. “The REFER Act would go a long way to preventing cannabis bigot AG Jeff Sessions from cracking down on the states that have legalized cannabis.”

    “It’s a bill with a fun name and a serious purpose,” he added.

    In the past year, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have helped introduce several pieces of new legislation (and some revamped, long-researched favorites) to address the booming fields of cannabis science, industry, and incarceration in a meaningful way.

    As in prior years, recent attempts to change federal cannabis laws have explored different legislative routes to getting the DOJ to lay off while states work to figure it all out.

    How effective these approaches will be, both in Congress and on the ground, is yet to be seen. In this moment and juncture in the history of U.S. cannabis, however, it’s at least worth noting (as someone who follows the melee) that confident actions and a little humor can go a long way.

    CONTINUE READING…

    https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/4779/text

    Department of Defense Sidestepping FDA on MMJ for Soldiers on the Ground

    Feature Image


    Congress has presented President Donald Trump with a bill that could provide an avenue for DoD to give active service members access to medical cannabis

    A new defense bill could open the door for active duty soldiers to use marijuana for medicinal purposes. The National Defense Authorization Act (HR-2810) gives the Department of Defense, rather than the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the authority to approve drugs and medical devices.

    The bill is designed “to reduce the number of deaths or the severity of harm to members of the armed forces… caused by a risk or agent of war.” It doesn’t specifically list medical marijuana, yet it could be used to allow military members serving outside the United States the freedom to use non-FDA-approved substances including cannabis. In other words, it would give the Pentagon the authority to distribute medical marijuana.

    After being approved the U.S. House of Representatives on November 14, and then agreed to by the Senate on November 16, the measure was sent to President Donald Trump, who hasn’t given any indication as to whether he plans to sign the bill.

    As of now, the FDA has the sole power to authorize medical drugs and devices. Federally, marijuana is classified as a Schedule I substance and therefore illegal, prohibiting Veterans Affairs (VA) from discussing and recommending medical cannabis.

    Section 732 of HR-2810 would allow the Department of Defense to sidestep the FDA and marijuana’s Schedule I status to sign off on cannabis as a medical treatment to those serving the country overseas.

    Lawmakers supporting the bill, including House armed Services Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), said the bill is long overdue and necessary, claiming the FDA isn’t acting swiftly enough to provide troops with the medical support they need.

    “The chairman has perfect moral clarity on this provision, and there is no doubt in his mind that it is the right thing to do for the troops,” said House Armed Services spokesman Claude Chafin.

    “This bill is the result of a lengthy, bipartisan process to ensure that United States military’s needs are properly met,” said Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA), a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee.

    PLEASE CONTINUE READING!

    Congressman Heck Introduces Marijuana Banking Amendments

    by NORML September 2, 2017

    Congressman Denny Heck (WA-10) with Representatives Perlmutter (CO-07), Lee (CA-13), and Titus (NV-01) have submitted two amendments to the financial services division to be included in the House appropriations bill. Both of these amendments focus on banking services for legal marijuana-related businesses and would be a temporary fix until the current legislation, the SAFE Banking Act, is passed into law.

    The first amendment prohibits any funds in the bill from being used to punish banks for serving marijuana businesses that are legal under state law. The second amendment prohibits the Treasury from altering FinCEN’s guidance to financial institutions on providing banking services to legitimate marijuana businesses. These amendments, if included, would allow for legal marijuana-related business to operate according to state laws and enjoy access to the banking system.

    Currently, hundreds of licensed and regulated businesses do not have access to the banking industry and are unable to accept credit cards, deposit revenues, or write checks to meet payroll or pay taxes. This situation is untenable. No industry can operate safely, transparently, or effectively without access to banks or other financial institutions.

    Eight states and the District of Columbia have legalized adult use of marijuana and more than half the states have implemented medical marijuana laws, so it is both sensible and necessary to include these proposed amendments so that these growing number of state-compliant businesses, and their consumers, may operate in a manner that is similar to other legal commercial entities.

    You can click here to send an email in support of the SAFE Banking Act to your federal elected officials now.

    CONTINUE READING…

    RE: International Drug Scheduling; Convention on Psychotropic Substances; Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs; Ocfentanil, Carfentanil, Pregabalin, Tramadol, Cannabidiol, Ketamine, and Eleven Other Substances; Request for Comments

    The information contained herein is from the Government website of REGULATIONS.GOV.

    They are currently seeking comments on the scheduling of the above named substances.  After browsing through the information I did not see CANNABIS included in this request.

     Cannabidiol, IS INCLUDED. 

    I will submit my comments and will post my response here on the website.

    Image result for psychotropic substances

    Summary

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is requesting interested persons to submit comments concerning abuse potential, actual abuse, medical usefulness, trafficking, and impact of scheduling changes on availability for medical use of 17 drug substances. These comments will be considered in preparing a response from the United States to the World Health Organization (WHO) regarding the abuse liability and diversion of these drugs. WHO will use this information to consider whether to recommend that certain international restrictions be placed on these drugs. This notice requesting comments is required by the Controlled Substances Act (the CSA).

    Dates

    Submit either electronic or written comments by September 13, 2017.

    Supplementary Information

    I. Background

    The United States is a party to the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances (Psychotropic Convention). Article 2 of the Psychotropic Convention provides that if a party to the convention or WHO has information about a substance, which in its opinion may require international control or change in such control, it shall so notify the Secretary-General of the United Nations (the U.N. Secretary-General) and provide the U.N. Secretary-General with information in support of its opinion.

    Section 201 of the CSA (21 U.S.C. 811) (Title II of the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970) provides that when WHO notifies the United States under Article 2 of the Psychotropic Convention that it has information that may justify adding a drug or other substances to one of the schedules of the Psychotropic Convention, transferring a drug or substance from one schedule to another, or deleting it from the schedules, the Secretary of State must transmit the notice to the Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary of HHS). The Secretary of HHS must then publish the notice in the Federal Register and provide opportunity for interested persons to submit comments that will be considered by HHS in its preparation of the scientific and medical evaluations of the drug or substance.

    Links to further information and to post comments:

    Docket ID: FDA-2017-N-4515

    Agency: Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

    Parent Agency: Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

    *View all documents and comments in this Docket

    *Public Comments that have already been received and posted.

    *SUBMIT YOUR COMMENT THROUGH THIS LINK

    *LINK TO DOCUMENTATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER

    With much gratitude from the USMjParty, Thank You, Sen. Booker!

    THIS is what I’ve been praying for!

    cory booker

    Above:  Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) announces the “Marijuana Justice Act” live on Facebook, August 1, 2017.  Follow link to view video!

    30766779544_776467f567_o

    Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) took a giant leap to the front of the legalize Marijuana train and did, in fact, introduce what I consider to be a genuine attempt at ending the failed drug war on all of our people.

    The MARIJUANA JUSTICE ACT would correct the long-standing goals of the prison industrial complex.  It is asking to do the following:

    *Remove Marijuana from the Controlled Substance Act at the Federal Level,

    *Give incentive to States via Federal funds to discontinue prosecuting for Marijuana,

    *Retroactive – to provide for a review of Marijuana sentences,

    *Expunge – Federal Marijuana use and possession crimes,

    *Create Community reinvestment through various programs,

    “Descheduling marijuana and applying that change retroactively to people currently serving time for marijuana offenses is a necessary step in correcting this unjust system. States have so far led the way in reforming our criminal justice system and it’s about time the federal government catches up and begins to assert leadership.”

    The legalize Marijuana movement has been gaining strength for a number of years now throughout the U.S., and when Attorney General Jeff Session announced his requiem of a failed (and inhumane) war on Marijuana it turned enough heads to say enough is enough!  We cannot continue to let our Government lock us in cages for no good reason. 

    There has been numerous Bills introduced so far this year concerning Marijuana, according to GovTrack.us.  I am including a few of the links here for convenience.

    H.R. 3534: To make the Controlled Substances Act inapplicable with respect to marihuana in States that have legalized marijuana and have in effect a statewide regulatory regime to protect certain Federal interests, and for other purposes.

    H.R. 3391: To amend the Controlled Substances Act to make marijuana accessible for use by qualified marijuana researchers for medical purposes, and for other purposes.

    H.R. 3252: Second Chance for Students Act

    S. 1374: CARERS Act of 2017

    H.R. 2920: CARERS Act of 2017

    S. 1008: Therapeutic Hemp Medical Access Act of 2017

    H.R. 2273: Charlotte’s Web Medical Access Act of 2017

    H.R. 2020: To provide for the rescheduling of marijuana into schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act.

    The only way to truly end the war on marijuana is to remove it from the CSA and then continue down through the individual States.  This is what Sen. Booker is trying to make happen with the Marijuana Justice Act and I certainly hope that everyone gets behind him on this most important endeavor.

    Here is a link to his Twitter where you can send him a message to congratulate him on this awesome step his is taking!

    We cannot continue to let our people die on rogue street drugs such as heroin and fentanyl because they have to pass a drug test for Marijuana.  End the madness now!  End the war on drugs!  REPEAL PROHIBITION!

    https://www.facebook.com/corybooker/videos/10157111094132228/

    https://www.scribd.com/document/355207910/Marijuana-Justice-Act-of-2017#user-util-view-profile

    https://www.booker.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=638

    https://twitter.com/SenBookerOffice?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

    https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/browse?text=marijuana#sort=-introduced_date

    http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/medical-marijuana-bill-aims-to-fight-sessions-war-on-drugs-w488311

    http://www.wlky.com/article/sen-booker-introduce-marijuana-justice-act/10396905

    https://kentuckymarijuanaparty.com/2017/07/23/the-children-left-behind/

    https://kentuckymarijuanaparty.com/2017/07/11/dying-with-francis-and-learning-to-live-again/

    https://kentuckymarijuanaparty.com/2015/09/24/all-roads-in-kentucky-lead-you-through-hell/

    http://kyusmjparty.weebly.com/usmjparty-platform.html?fb_action_ids=10154004928797994&fb_action_types=og.comments

    DeKalb father sues AG Jeff Sessions over marijuana

    Christopher Hopper, WXIA 11:45 PM. EDT July 27, 2017

    A DeKalb County father is suing the federal government, namely Attorney General Jeff Sessions over marijuana.

    Sebastien Cotte, Stone Mountain, is named in a federal lawsuit filed Monday, July 24 in a U.S. District Court in Manhattan challenging the Controlled Substances Act.

    Cotte has a 6-year-old son Jagger who suffers from a terminal neurological disorder called Leigh’s Disease.

    Cotte has been giving Jagger cannabis oil for nearly three years and believes it has extended his life.

    “Usually 95 percent of them do not make it past 4-years-old,” said Sebastien Cotte, suing the federal government.

    In September Jagger will turn seven.

    Around the time most kids die from this chronic disease, Cotte moved his family to Colorado and Jagger started cannabis oil.

    He no longer takes oxycontin or morphine.

    “It’s been game changing for him it’s one of the main reasons he’s still alive today,” he said.

    Cotte said marijuana’s medical benefits are keeping Jagger alive, and that’s why he’s a plaintiff in this lawsuit.

    Browser does not support iframes.

    It’s 90 pages long and is against Attorney General Jeff Session and the federal government for classifying marijuana in a category with heroin and LSD, highly addictive drugs with no accepted medical use.

    Cocaine and methamphetamine are Schedule II drugs and are considered less addictive and dangerous compared to marijuana.

    Cotte said that Schedule I status is what’s keeping Georgian’s who can legally use cannabis oil from being able to buy marijuana grown here.

    “To be able to get it here in Georgia, get a safe legal tested product here in which we could get if cannabis wasn’t a Schedule I substance, that would be life changing for Jagger and thousands,” he said. “You know we have over 2,000 people on the registry right now.”

    There are several plaintiffs in the lawsuit in addition to the Cotte’s including a former NFL player and a combat veteran with PTSD.

    PDF DOCUMENT OF LAWSUIT HERE

    CONTINUE READING / VIDEO…

    Trump’s DOJ gears up for crackdown on marijuana

    Image result for marijuana

    By Lydia Wheeler – 07/23/17 07:30 AM EDT

    The Trump administration is readying for a crackdown on marijuana users under Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

    President Trump’s Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety, led by Sessions, is expected to release a report next week that criminal justice reform advocates fear will link marijuana to violent crime and recommend tougher sentences for those caught growing, selling and smoking the plant. 

    Sessions sent a memo in April updating the U.S. Attorney’s Offices and Department of Justice Department (DOJ) component heads on the work of the task force, which he said would be accomplished through various subcommittees. In the memo, Sessions said he has asked for initial recommendations no later than July 27.

    “Task Force subcommittees will also undertake a review of existing policies in the areas of charging, sentencing, and marijuana to ensure consistency with the Department’s overall strategy on reducing violent crime and with Administration goals and priorities,” he wrote. 

    Criminal justice reform advocates fear Sessions’s memo signals stricter enforcement is ahead.

    “The task force revolves around reducing violent crime and Sessions and other DOJ officials have been out there over the last month and explicitly the last couple of weeks talking about how immigration and marijuana increases violent crime,” said Inimai Chettiar, director of the Brennan Center’s Justice Program. 

    “We’re worried there’s going to be something in the recommendations that is either saying that that’s true or recommending action be taken based on that being true.”

    Sessions sent a letter in May asking congressional leaders to do away with an amendment to the DOJ budget prohibiting the agency from using federal funds to prevent states “from implementing their own State laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana.”

    “I believe it would be unwise for Congress to restrict the discretion of the Department to fund prosecutions, particularly in the midst of an historic drug epidemic and potentially long-term uptick in violent crime,” said the letter from Sessions, first obtained by Massroots.com and verified by The Washington Post.

    As for the task force, Sessions said another subcommittee would “explore our use of asset forfeiture and make recommendations on any improvements needed to legal authorities, policies, and training to most effectively attack the financial infrastructure of criminal organizations.”

    On Wednesday, Sessions reportedly re-established a controversial criminal asset seizure program ahead of the committee’s recommendations.

    Local law enforcement leaders say a crackdown appears to be next, though they argue there’s no need for it.

    “From a practitioner’s point of view, marijuana is not a drug that doesn’t have some danger to it, but it’s not the drug that’s driving violent crime in America,” said Ronal Serpas, the former superintendent of the New Orleans Police Department and co-chairman of Law Enforcement Leaders to Reduce Crime and Incarceration.

    “That’s not the drug with which we see so much death and destruction on the streets of America. Crack and powdered cocaine, heroin and opioids is where we’re seeing people die on street corners fighting over territory or control.”

    Eight states and the District of Columbia have legalized the recreational use of marijuana, and another 21 states allow the use of medical marijuana, according to the Marijuana Policy Project, but marijuana use is still illegal under federal law.

    If Sessions ignites a fight over states’ rights, Chettiar wonders whether it will spur Republicans into a showdown with the Trump administration on criminal justice reform.   

    Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who publicly criticized Sessions for reversing Obama-era guidelines on criminal charges and sentencing in May, said he’s not in favor of the DOJ interfering with state policies regarding marijuana. 

    “I will oppose anybody from the administration or otherwise that wants to interfere with state policy,” he told The Hill this week.

    Paul is part of a bipartisan group of Senators pushing legislation to allow patients to continue accessing medical marijuana in states where it is legal without fear of federal prosecution.

    Legislation introduced last month by Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Paul introduced — known as the The Compassionate Access, Research Expansion and Respect States (CARERS) Act — would amend federal law to allow states to set their own medical marijuana policies.

    According to Politifact, Trump pledged to leave marijuana legalization up to the states while on the campaign trail. But last month he reportedly pushed back against the congressional ban on the DOJ interfering with state medical marijuana laws in a signing statement, asserting that he isn’t legally bound to the limits imposed by Congress.

    The DOJ’s likely move on marijuana comes amid rising tensions between Trump and Sessions.

    Trump in an interview with The New York Times publicly dressed down Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation, calling that decision “very unfair” to him.

    Longtime Trump ally Roger Stone argued this week that Trump has been disappointed in Sessions.

    “The president initially bonded with Sessions because he saw him as a tough guy,” he said in an interview with The New York Times.

    “Now he’s saying: ‘Where’s my tough guy? Why doesn’t he have my back?’ There’s a lack of aggressiveness with Sessions, unless it involves chasing people for smoking pot.”

    In an interview with The Hill, Booker called Sessions “one of the greatest threats to the safety of our local communities in America.”

    “If you try to start prosecuting marijuana … you create more violence and more danger as well as greater government cost,” he said. “These policies that he’s doing ultimately go to the core of the safety of our communities.”

    Though Sessions appears to be an obstacle for lawmakers and advocates who want sentencing reform, Booker said he’s not “insurmountable.”

    “If we can overcome Strom Thurmond’s filibuster against the civil rights bill, we can overcome a U.S. Attorney General who is out of step with history and out of step with his party,” he said. 

    But Sessions isn’t alone in his views on pot. Though he said he believes in the need for sentencing reform, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) seemed to agree this week that there needs to be stricter enforcement.

    “I believe marijuana probably needs to be cracked down on, but we’ll see when he sends it over,” Graham said of the task force report.

    Tags Kirsten Gillibrand Lindsey Graham Lisa Murkowski Jeff Sessions Al Franken Rand Paul Mike Lee

    CONTINUE READING…

    Senators introduce bill to end federal medical marijuana prohibition

    Sessions asked Congress in May to allow the Justice Department to prosecute businesses and individuals in states with medical marijuana laws

    Congress took a step toward easing its stance on medical marijuana on Thursday.

    U.S. Sens. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), Corey Booker (D-New Jersey) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) introduced a bill that would end the federal prohibition of medical marijuana and take steps to improve research.

    The Compassionate Access, Research Expansion and Respect States, or CARERS, Act would effectively change the Controlled Substances Act, allowing the possession, production and distribution of medical marijuana in states with established marijuana laws.

    Twenty-nine states, as well as the District of Columbia, have already legalized marijuana, but the CARERS Act would prevent the federal government from prosecuting businesses and individuals in states where medical marijuana is legal, since federally marijuana is still illegal under the Controlled Substances Act.

    “The reintroduction of the CARERS Act is the first of many steps we hope this Congress will take to end the federal prohibition of medical marijuana,” Don Murphy, director of conservative outreach for the Marijuana Policy Project, said in a statement. “Polls show overwhelmingly strong support for medical marijuana, and it spans the political spectrum.

    “The federal government should not be meddling in state laws that allow it or obstructing research into its many medical benefits.”

    The introduction of the bill comes days after news that Attorney General Jeff Sessions wrote a letter to leaders of Congress asking that they undo protections for the industry under the Hinchey-Rohrabacher Amendment. That amendment, which is tied to the federal appropriations bill, prevents the Justice Department from using federal funds to enforce federal prohibition in states with legal marijuana laws.

    Don’t miss: The marijuana industry could be worth $50 billion annually by 2026

    The act, which was first introduced in 2015, would also allow doctors to recommend medical marijuana to veterans in states where its legal and it would give researchers more access to cannabis to conduct studies, which has been an issue in the industry.

    Marijuana is made up of a multitude of cannabinoids — the two most prominent being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). While THC is the main psychoactive component, researchers believe CBD has potential medical uses. The CARERS Act would remove CBD from the Drug Enforcement Administration’s list of Schedule I drugs, according to Leafly, which would allow states to import it.

    CONTINUE READING…