Public support for marijuana has grown markedly in recent years. In a 2017 Gallup poll, a record-high 64 percent of Americans said they supported marijuana legalization.
“Lawmakers, while often slow to respond to public demand, are increasingly realizing the untenable position of maintaining a pro-criminalization stance,” said Justin Strekal, political director for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML.
“As public support continues to grow, which will be going to create a virtuous cycle of policy improvements upwards,” Strekal said. “Our biggest opponent right today will be apathy as well as entrenched reefer madness ideology.”
So far, the Trump administration has sent mixed signals however the item appears to be adopting a more liberal view on medical marijuana.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ Justice Department in January rescinded a policy directing federal prosecutors not to target marijuana businesses which conducted themselves within state law.
however in April, Trump ditched Sessions’ stance following an appeal by Republican Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado, who had vowed to block DOJ nominations in retaliation. Sessions was given no advance warning of the shift, news outlets reported.
Last week, staunch Trump ally Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., told Fox Business News which he has “been reassured which the president intends on keeping his campaign promise” to legalize medical marijuana across the country.
Meanwhile, lawmakers have introduced sweeping legislation to defang the ongoing federal prohibition. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., as well as Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., have proffered bills which would certainly not only decriminalize marijuana however nullify some possession-related convictions as well as establish community funds.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., introduced his own legislation which has been co-sponsored by nine different senators.
While Democrats in Congress still tend to be more outwardly supportive of marijuana decriminalization policies than Republicans, the gap appears to be narrowing.
Gardner, alongside Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., in June released a bipartisan bill prioritizing states’ rights on marijuana. Rohrabacher helped introduced an amendment to an omnibus spending bill which protected medical marijuana recipients as well as became law in 2014. as well as GOP Rep. Thomas Garrett of Virginia pushed a bill which would certainly effectively end marijuana prohibition at the federal level.
Many advocates as well as critics of a more liberal pot policy view the push for medical marijuana as a stepping stone toward the design adopted Wednesday by Canada.
Under which system, a plethora of cannabis products containing the psychoactive ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol will be legal to buy, sell, distribute as well as consume recreationally.
As Canada legalizes, pot industry activists as well as business owners have their eyes set squarely on U.S. prohibition. “which’s literally the item,” Peterson said when asked what was the biggest threat to his business.
For Sabet, however, prohibition will be a bulwark against the drawbacks of an unfettered marijuana industry.
“I’m not surprised which the industry will be saying which they don’t want to be missing out through Canada,” Sabet said, “however frankly I think the item’s a not bad thing which they are missing out.”
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