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undergroundnewsroom.com April 22, 2018


Prosecutors in pot-friendly states will decide on crackdown

08 January 2018, 05:00 | Rodolfo Quinn

When Jeff Sessions announced his intention to rescind the Cole Memo, a Department of Justice policy telling prosecutors to leave legal marijuana states alone, many wondered what President Trump's response would be.

What this does is create an inevitable stand-off over the 10th Amendment rights of seven states and the District of Columbia that have fully legalized cannabis, including California, which officially made pot legal on January 1. Ellen and Stu Smith are champions for the use of medical cannabis for chronic pain-and they believed something like this could happen.

Oregon, being one of the first states to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, reacted to the news in a different ways.

Buying Marijuana Nothing about the Sessions memo changed how a dispensary operates, and it didn't force any state-legalized marijuana industries to shut down. And it said it won't speculate about federal decisions.

In his memo Sessions said, "Prosecutors should follow the well-established principles that govern all federal prosecutors".

Still, some were surprised by the move, which introduces extreme uncertainty into a flourishing market of growers, sellers, and buyers of marijuana.

While you probably don't have to worry about getting swept up in a raid by the Drug Enforcement Administration on your way home from the pot shop, according to state officials and pot attorneys, that doesn't mean you can start cutting corners with your basement grow, business plans and pot purchases. He said he opposed legalization at the ballot box but his office defended the law against lawsuits once it passed.

The move essentially shifts federal policy from the hands-off approach adopted under the previous administration to unleashing federal prosecutors across the country to decide individually how to prioritize resources to crack down on pot possession, distribution and cultivation of the drug in states where it is legal.

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Medical marijuana is safe.for now.

"It is the mission of the Department of Justice to enforce the laws of the United States, and the previous issuance of guidance undermines the rule of law", Sessions said in a statement.

"Marijuana is a failed experiment in Colorado and Attorney General Sessions' memo provides USA attorneys the power to stop the powerful drug cartels from getting a permanent foothold in our state and bring drug dealers to justice", the statement said.

Coos County Sherriff Craig Zanni said, "This is now a federal issue related to a change of federal prosecutor's directives".

"I think we'll have a strong argument should the federal government try to change the rules", Cynthia Coffman said.

Congress voted in its last session to extend a spending provision known as the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, which blocks the Justice Department from using federal funds to impede the implementation of state medical marijuana laws.

Gillibrand urged fellow lawmakers to support legislation she proposed that would "keep the federal government out of the way when doctors and patients decide that medical marijuana is the best treatment for them".

The new USA attorney in Massachusetts, Andrew Lelling, a Trump appointee who was confirmed by the Senate in mid-December, called marijuana "a risky drug" in his statement on Sessions' action.



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