Attorney General Rescinds Obama-Era Marijuana Guidelines

Violet Powell
January 8, 2018

That memo guided US attorneys that "the federal government has traditionally relied on state and local law enforcement agencies to address marijuana activity through enforcement of their own narcotics laws".

The policy change, detailed by Sessions in a one-page memo to federal prosecutors nationwide, came three days after California formally launched the world's largest regulated commercial market for recreational marijuana.

"That would be his top priority, and that is regardless of what the topic is, whether it's marijuana or whether it's immigration", Sanders told reporters.

But since taking office and appointing Sessions as Attorney General, Trump's been silent on the issue of marijuana.

Clash with states He directed federal attorneys "to use previously established prosecutorial principles that provide them all the necessary tools to disrupt criminal organizations, tackle the growing drug crisis, and thwart violent crime across our country".

Even as a series of states legalized the recreational use of marijuana, the possession, use or sale of the drug remained a federal crime. According to Quinnipiac polls, almost 75 percent of voters are against the federal government prosecuting people for marijuana in states that have legalized it.

Brian Vicente, a Denver attorney who co-wrote Colorado's 2012 constitutional amendment legalizing recreation marijuana, said the industry will closely examine the background of any new USA attorney nominees.

Lori Ajax, chief of California's Bureau of Cannabis Control, which oversees the state's regulation of the marijuana industry, said California was conferring with other states to respond to Sessions' action.

Legal marijuana business owners have the most to lose financially from the Sessions memo.

Sessions, a former Alabama senator, has long viewed pot as a public menace and a source of street crime. This decision will create massive uncertainty, hurt local businesses and tax revenue, and harm public safety by driving cannabis activity back into the more risky black market. "Im getting in at a value that I could not if this hadnt happened".

DHS cellphone border searches jumped 50 percent in 2017
An " advanced " search requires an officer to have reasonable suspicion of criminal behavior and approval of a supervisor. Agents are also prohibited from retrieving any information that is stored remotely, such as data stored in the cloud.

While lawmakers were quick to defend OR state law, Coos County cannabis dispensaries seem to be uncertain, but ultimately unworried about the changes. I am a states person.

Wykowski said the fear of prosecution "could make investors more concerned about putting money into the industry".

By Thursday afternoon, one USA attorney in a key jurisdiction said Sessions' new guidelines wouldn't change federal enforcement there. They also declined to specify what message the attorney general is sending to the pot industry, which is expanding in states with their own more lenient laws. Several companies reached for comment did not return calls and emails Thursday.

"Kate Brown is on our side and that's good to know", McKinley said.

The federal government made a statement against the marijuana industry Thursday. "As such, we have no information upon which we could draw a conclusions or policies related to this matter at this time". "The governor's already put $30 million in tax revenue in the budget".

So either Trump lied about protecting marijuana laws and actually wants to crackdown or he just doesn't care about the issue and is just letting Sessions do whatever he wants.

"At the Oregon Department of Justice we will continue to make sure Oregon's marijuana industry thrives under our carefully considered state regulatory requirements".

Legal experts do not expect a flood of new cases, and people familiar with the job of US attorney say prosecutors could decide against using already limited resources to seek criminal charges against cannabis companies that abide by state regulations or their customers.

"Opening the door to go after legal marijuana businesses ignores the will of the majority of Americans and marks yet another socially unjust and economically backward scheme from this administration", Wyden said.

Other reports by PlayStation Move reviews

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER