Trump Administration Preparing for Major Crackdown on Marijuana

Trump Administration Preparing for Major Crackdown on Marijuana”

Since being confirmed as the United States Attorney General, marijuana advocates have been fearful of Jeff Sessions' desire to shutter the marijuana industry. But according to experts, that could change very soon.

In April, Sessions wrote a memo to the task force asking them for recommendations on how the Department of Justice should proceed on marijuana.

In the letter sent to Congress in May, Sessions asks that they dismantle the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment, which passed in 2014 and prevents the DOJ from using federal funds to prosecute individuals in states with medical legalization. And then last week Sessions re-established a controversial program that allows the DOJ to seize criminal assets as part of their investigations.

"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", Ronal Serpas, former New Orleans Police Department superintendent, told The Hill.

First reported by Tom Angell on June 12, the tangible effect of the Sessions request to congressional leaders remains a dark and foreboding question for the industry. President Donald Trump promised to not touch state's rights on marijuana while on the campaign trail, and the policy conflict might fuel more issues between the president and his attorney general, which ignited this week. Officials have also been reviewing the Cole Memorandum, a set of guidelines established in 2013 that directs the DOJ to focus marijuana enforcement efforts on violent crimes and distribution in states without legalization laws.

"The record makes clear that the CSA doesn't make any rational sense and the federal government knows it", said attorney Michael Hiller, who represents Washington and the other plaintiffs including 11-year-old Alexis Bortell who needs medical marijuana treatment for epilepsy and disabled military veteran Jose Belen who uses the drug to control his post traumatic stress syndrome.

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