A new report released today finds that many medical marijuana states are already in compliance with the federal government’s enforcement guidelines. Because of this, patient advocates are calling on Congress to make some binding changes to federal policy.
According to the report, "Third Time the Charm? State Laws on Medical Cannabis Distribution and Department of Justice Guidance on Enforcement," published by Americans for Safe Access, medical marijuana states have done everything in their power to enact the appropriate regulations to keep in good standings with the federal government. In fact, most would already have improved regulations in place if not for federal intimidation tactics preventing the legislative process from moving forward.
Over the summer, the Department of Justice issued a memo by the U.S. Deputy Attorney General James Cole that served as an effort to calm down federal prosecutors in states where legal medical marijuana exists. However, many patients as well as providers enrolled in the program have been skeptical of this supposed peace offering because prosecutors are not mandated against bringing the indictment hammer down.
Yet, representatives for the ASA say they are optimistic that the schizophrenic nature of federal prosecutor’s interpretation of the rules will improve.
"We hope the latest federal policy on marijuana will compel the Obama Administration to make good on its promises to stop wasting taxpayer money on undermining duly enacted state laws," said ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer. "With almost 40 percent of Americans living in states that permit medical marijuana, it's time for the federal government to resolve the conflict between its outdated policies and the growing number of compassionate state laws."
The Obama Administration has spent over $300 million of the taxpayer’s money targeting medical marijuana programs, according to the report.
The ASA’s report suggests that state legislators use the 2013 Cole memo an important guideline when developing regulations associated with medical marijuana to ensure policies do not stand in the way of the patient’s needs.
In addition, the report also urges Congress to embrace legislation that would allow the reclassification of marijuana for medical use.
Mike Adams writes for Playboy's The Smoking Jacket, BroBible and Hustler Magazine. Follow him: @adamssoup; facebook.com/mikeadams73.