House Moves to Prevent DEA from Targeting Medical Marijuana
May 30th, 2014
Policy, Top News
A bipartisan coalition of House members voted to restrict the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”) from using funds to target medical marijuana operations that are legal under state laws. The move represents an ongoing transition towards legalization in the government’s stance on the cannabis industry following earlier actions to open up the banking sector and restrict prosecutions.
“Some people are suffering, and if a doctor feels that he needs to prescribe something to alleviate that suffering, it is immoral for this government to get in the way,” said Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.).
Medical marijuana has been legalized over 20 U.S. states and Washington D.C., while several additional states are considering legalization during the next election cycle. At the same time, companies like GW Pharmaceuticals plc [stockquote symbol=”GWPH”] are undergoing clinical trials for CBD-based therapeutics targeting difficult-to-treat diseases like childhood epilepsy.
Recreational cannabis has also been gaining steam, with the drug legalized in Colorado and Washington state. In response to the legalization, the U.S. DOJ instructed prosecutors to focus their efforts outside of these states, while President Obama has tried to open up commercial banking access to the sector. The response to recreational legalization from a public standpoint has also been largely positive.
Opponents to medical legalization, including the DEA, have argued that medical marijuana is just “a means to an end” for the legalization of recreational marijuana down the road. Many politicians opposed aren’t able to separate the medical usage of cannabis from the recreational use of the drug, especially given that the federal government has classified it as a Schedule I Controlled Substance.
The Senate is expected to consider its own appropriations bill for the DEA, while the House bill must survive a joint conference before going into effect.
This article was published by CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN), owner and operator of CFN Media, the industry’s leading agency and digital financial media network dedicated to the burgeoning CBD and legal cannabis industries. Call +1 (833) 420-CNFN for more information.
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