Author: Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director

Study: Cannabis Is A “Potential Exit Drug To Problematic Substance Use”

Three quarters of medical cannabis consumers report using it as a substitute for prescription drugs, alcohol, or some other illicit substance, according to survey data published in the journal Addiction Research and Theory. An international team of investigators from Canada and the United States assessed the subjective impact of marijuana on the use of licit and illicit substances via self-report in a cohort of 404 medical cannabis patients recruited from four dispensaries in British Columbia, Canada. Researchers reported that subjects frequently substituted cannabis for other substances, including conventional pharmaceuticals. Authors […]

Alternet: “Will Obama Go After Legal Pot In Washington And Colorado?”

It has been nearly seven weeks since voters in Colorado and Washington made history, enacting at the ballot box unprecedented measures legalizing the adult possession on cannabis. Yet during this time, federal officials have largely remained silent. One week ago, US Attorney General Eric Holder cryptically told Bloomberg News that the administration will formally announce its intentions “relatively soon,” but added no further details. Most recently, on Friday, President Obama told ABC News’ Barbara Walters: “It would not make sense for us to see a top priority as going after […]

Arizona Superior Court Judge: State-Licensed Dispensing Of Medical Cannabis Is Not Preempted By Federal Law

A 2010 voter-approved Arizona state law authorizing “the local cultivation, sale, and use, of medical marijuana” is not preempted by the federal Controlled Substances Act, according to the Superior Court of Arizona, Maricopa County. The ruling, issued earlier this month by Superior Court Judge Michael Gordon, allows for the establishment of state-licensed medicinal cannabis dispensaries within Arizona — the first of which opened its doors last week. State-licensed medical marijuana facilities now operate in several states, including Colorado, New Jersey, New Mexico, and Maine. A majority of Arizona voters approved […]

Seattle Times: “It’s Time For Employers To Rethink Marijuana, Drug-Testing Policies”

A majority of Americans are now demanding we reassess our cannabis policies. As I argue in The Seattle Times, this reassessment should also include amending employers’ policies that sanction workers’ off-the-job use of marijuana. It’s time for employers to rethink marijuana, drug-testing policies via The Seattle Times Voters have declared that it is time to rethink our marijuana policies. It’s also time to rethink the practice of drug testing for pot. The enactment of Initiative 502, which legalized recreational marijuana use in Washington state, is an ideal opportunity for employers […]

Study: Cannabis Associated With Lower Diabetes Risk

Adults with a history of marijuana use have a lower prevalence of type 2 diabetes and possess a lower risk of contracting the disease than those with no history of cannabis consumption, according to clinical trial data published in the British Medical Journal. Investigators at the University of California, Los Angeles assessed the association between diabetes mellitus (DM) and marijuana use among adults aged 20 to 59 in a nationally representative sample of the US population of 10,896 adults. The study included four groups: non-marijuana users (61.0%), past marijuana users […]

Gallup: Most Americans Want The Federal Government To Butt Out Of State Marijuana Laws

Sixty-four percent of Americans oppose federal interference in state laws that allow for the legal use of the substance by adults, according to a random sampling of 1,015 adults by Gallup. On Election Day, voters in Colorado and Washington approved measures allowing for the personal use of cannabis by those age 21 and older. Both of those state laws took effect in recent days. According to Gallup, 64 percent of respondents do not believe that the federal government “should take steps to enforce federal anti-marijuana laws in those states.” Only […]

It’s Official: Cannabis Possession And Cultivation Now Legal In Colorado

History was made once again today when Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed an Executive Order that makes an “official declaration of the vote” related to Amendment 64. This declaration formalizes the amendment as part of the state Constitution and makes legal the personal use, possession and limited home-growing of marijuana under Colorado law for adults 21 years of age and older. “Voters were loud and clear on Election Day,” Gov. Hickenlooper said in a prepared statement. “We will begin working immediately with the General Assembly and state agencies to implement […]

Cannabis Is Now Legal In Washington State

History was made in Washington on Election night when 55 percent of voters decided in favor of Initiative 502. And at 12am this morning, history was made once again. Today, for the first time in 89 years (Washington lawmakers initially outlawed cannabis in 1923, 14 years ahead of the enactment of federal prohibition.), an adult may possess up to one ounce cannabis (and/or up to 16 ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form, and 72 ounces of marijuana-infused product in liquid form) for their own personal use in private — […]

Poll: Solid Majority Of Voters Back Legalizing Cannabis

Nearly six out of ten Americans support legalizing cannabis, according to a just released Public Policy Polling automated telephone survey of 1,325 voters, commissioned by the Marijuana Policy Project. 58 percent of respondents said that marijuana ‘should be legal.’ Only 34 percent of respondents opposed the notion of legalizing cannabis. A solid plurality of voters (47 percent of respondents versus 33 percent) also said that the federal government should not interfere with newly passed marijuana legalization measures in Colorado and Washington. Male respondents endorsed legalization by a greater margin than […]

Congressional Lawmakers Introduce Legislation To Halt Federal Interference In State Marijuana Laws

United States Representatives have introduced bipartisan legislation in Congress — House Bill 6606, The Respect States’ and Citizens’ Rights Act of 2012 — to amend the US Controlled Substances Act to provide that federal law shall not preempt state marijuana laws. The measure is sponsored by Rep. Diana DeGette of Colorado, and is co-sponsored by Reps. Blumenauer (OR), Coffman (CO), Cohen (TN), Farr (CA), Frank (MA), Grijalva (AZ), Lee (CA), Paul (TX), and Polis (CO). It has been referred to Referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary. “I am […]