Thank You Sessions for Kickstarting Legalization
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Thank You Sessions for Kickstarting Legalization
Posted by CN Staff on June 17, 2018 at 07:17:46 PT
By The LA Times Editorial Board
Source: Los Angeles Times
Washington, D.C. -- Good job, Jeff Sessions! It seems the attorney generalís misguided attempts to revive the unpopular and unjust federal war on marijuana may be having the exact opposite effect ó prompting a new bipartisan effort in Congress to allow states to legalize cannabis.Last week Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass) introduced a bill that would essentially end the federal prohibition in states that have chosen to permit medical or recreational marijuana under their own laws. In an unexpected boost for the bill, President Trump said he probably would support it.
The States Act, as it is known, would amend the Controlled Substances Act so that it would no longer be a crime for people to buy or sell marijuana, as long as they were following state laws. It also would extend the right to legalize marijuana to U.S. territories, federally recognized tribes and to Washington, D.C. ó where voters passed an initiative to allow adult recreational use of marijuana but Congress has blocked the district from permitting its sale.It would be ironic if Trumpís irrational anger at the attorney general is what finally pushes the federal government to adopt a rational policy on marijuana. This isnít the first bill in Congress proposing to ease federal restrictions on marijuana. It is, however, the first that has a chance of passing and the potential support of the president. Itís the most promising effort to date to do away with the contradiction between federal law and the laws passed in recent years by California and other states to move marijuana sales from the black market into a legal, regulated and taxed system. That would be an extraordinary step forward.And for this, we can thank Sessions.In January, Sessions rescinded an Obama-era policy memo that outlined a hands-off approach to states that had legalized marijuana. The memo said federal law enforcement agencies should not interfere with states that allowed the commercial sale of marijuana as long as there are were strict regulations in place, including rules to prevent sales to minors and to block criminal enterprises from participating.Instead, Sessions said, federal prosecutors would have discretion to go after marijuana businesses. That has left the nascent legal market in a legal limbo, making it harder to move pot out of the shadows and into a controlled system.For instance, it has stymied attempts to provide banking services to the cannabis industry. Because marijuana remains illegal under federal law, banks and financial services companies wonít serve pot companies for fear of being penalized for handling money from drug sales. As a result, companies are forced to do business and pay their taxes in cash, which is hard to track and makes their businesses targets for robberies. Thatís dangerous, and itís bad public policy.The States Act is designed to counteract the Sessions crackdown, letting states decide if they want to legalize marijuana or not without federal interference. Trump last week said he ďprobably will end up supportingĒ the bill, after some hardball tactics by Gardner. The president did say on the campaign trail that legalization should be decided by the states. And it doesnít hurt that Trump is still mad at Sessions over the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.It would be ironic if Trumpís irrational anger at the attorney general is what finally pushes the federal government to adopt a rational policy on marijuana. Whatever the motivation, Congress ought to take advantage of the moment.Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Published: June 16, 2018Copyright: 2018 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comWebsite: -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #3 posted by John Tyler on June 19, 2018 at 17:22:25 PT
itís about time politicians did the right thing
I thought and hoped something like this would happen. Once a few states got legal and everybody saw that the sky did not fall down. They all concluded that the decades long Drug War was nothing but a big lie. Plus the legal states were making a ton of money. As we all know, the lure of easy money has very strong appeal, and politicians love money almost as much as power. Money, power, and an idea whose time has come will flatten anyone who is in the way, especially if you are a cartoonish character with too much authority and hind bound ideas.The politicians donít deserve any thanks though. It is more like, itís about time you guys did the right thing, and by the way fix the mess you have made of peopleís lives you have screwed up with your Drug War.I was wondering, Is it fun to work in a cannabis store?
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Comment #2 posted by Hope on June 19, 2018 at 16:26:46 PT
Don't you guys think that he's being facetious?
I do. He's thanking him for being a royal horse's ass. Sessions is actually helping our cause with his "Prosecute to the fullest extent of the law" attitude.Most people know cannabis prohibition is wrong and are sick of it. His headline making assinine moves and mouthing are helping our cause.Same as McConnell nearly got to help take Cannabis Sativa off the dangerous drugs list by legalizing hemp production, if only his efforts had succeeded.So many of us have been hurt so badly by this prohibition it's hard for us to see irony and facetiousness that easily. But he's being facetious. Like "Ha ha! You're actually helping in spite of your aims."
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Comment #1 posted by The GCW on June 17, 2018 at 11:37:05 PT
We're leaving them no choice; be no thank you's.
I'm not thanking that weasel. We're not waiting for dinks or anyone else in the fed government. We've learned a long time ago they only resist until they have no choice.Sessions is the swamp.
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