Sessions Allows More Aggressive Enforcement of Federal Laws Against Marijuana

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has rescinded a policy that discouraged prosecutors from enforcing federal laws against marijuana in states that have decriminalized the drug, The New York Times reports. In a statement, Sessions said that his memo to United States attorneys directs them “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.” While marijuana remains illegal under federal law, the drug has been at least partly legalized—including for medicinal use—in 29 states and the District of Columbia. California began allowing the sale of recreational marijuana on January 1. Sessions’ move is likely to increase the confusion about whether it is legal to buy, sell or possess marijuana in states where federal and state law conflict, the article notes.
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Attorney General Asks Congress to Roll Back Federal Medical Marijuana Protections

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has asked congressional leaders to roll back federal protections for medical marijuana. In a letter, Sessions asked the leaders to undo protections that prohibit the Justice Department from using federal funds to prevent certain states from implementing their own laws that “authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana.” The protections have been in place since 2014, The Washington Post reports. Sessions wrote, “I believe it would be unwise for Congress to restrict the discretion of the [Justice] Department to fund particular prosecutions, particularly in the midst of an historic drug epidemic and potentially long-term uptick in violent crime. The Department must be in a position to use all laws available to combat the transnational drug organizations and dangerous drug traffickers who threaten American lives.”
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Facing Addiction and The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) are proud to announce the merger of our organizations – creating a national leader in turning the tide on the addiction epidemic.
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