Paul Armentano of NORML on Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition

Paul Armentano of NORML on Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition

Paul Armentano of NORML on Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition

Really? How exactly is that going to work?

As of New Year's Day, California became the largest state to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

I'm thinking this cat is already out of the bag.

"This action by the Attorney General invites high-profile prosecutions of banks by aggressive, conservative federal prosecutors despite a national trend toward the permissive use of marijuana", Lynyak says.

"With the change in the capital markets, the growth of the cannabis sector generally, it's opened the door for us to be able to create an ETF that is much more specialized for marijuana growers", Steve Hawkins, co-chief executive officer of Horizons, said in a phone interview. Ron Paul: Sessions should be fired over marijuana decision.

As a US senator from Alabama, Sessions strongly opposed marijuana legalization. The federal law remained on the books, but it was to be, for all intents and purposes, ignored so long as the states imposed a rigorous regulatory scheme. The group said it submitted more than 360,000 signatures and is awaiting confirmation from the state. His hard-line position has now galvanized influential members of Congress - both Democrats and Republicans - resulting in lots of chest-pounding pronouncements of defiance.

First, the dollars and cents.

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Under the Cole and Ogden memos, legal cannabis markets flourished in places like Seattle, where pot shops outnumber locations of the city's famous hometown Starbucks coffee chain, and Denver, where dispensaries out number Starbucks two to one. A crackdown north of the border would likely put more money in the hands of the cartels - which would bring more instability to Mexico.

Murphy has said legal pot could bring in an estimated $300 million in tax revenue.

And about those constituents.

The truth is, there is great potential in the treatment of a myriad of diseases with compounds found in medical marijuana. They come from all walks of mainstream life. They openly opposed the ballot in 2016 but will have to roll with the new laws and regulations, and they are skeptical if the legalization of recreational marijuana will all balance itself out. Now, another pot protection is at risk, one that Sessions would like to see disappear. The best way to get rid of laws that are generally unpopular and destructive is to enforce them stringently.

Every party, gender, education, age and racial group supports legalization of marijuana except Republicans, who are opposed 62 - 33 percent, and voters over 65 years old, who are opposed 50 - 41 percent. "He should focus his energies on prosecuting criminals, not patients". Almost half, 47 percent want marijuana laws determined at the state level, and only 32 percent believe it's a federal issue.

"It is the mission of the Department of Justice to enforce the laws of the United States, and the previous issuance of guidance undermines the rule of law and the ability of our local, state, tribal and federal law enforcement partners to carry out this mission", Sessions said in a Department of Justice press release issued last week. So far, none has been courageous enough to come forward with such legislation. The federal law is the issue, and our federal legislators should act promptly to change the law that creates the conflict. An article in VTDigger details how assisted-living facilities, which receive federal funds, won't allow the use of marijuana for pain relief even though such use is legal under Vermont and New Hampshire law. Trump himself is no ardent drug warrior, having said as a candidate that he'd be fine with a federalist approach to enforcement in states where pot is legal. I am encouraged by Attorney General Sessions' revision of the Cole Memo. He serves as chair of the legislature's committee on marijuana policy "I think what more people are realizing is violent crime is linked to keeping marijuana illegal".

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