Yesterday on Capitol Hill, bestselling guidebook author and travel host Rick Steves held two briefings to address marijuana prohibition to a gathering of members of Congress and their staff. Inspired by Europe’s pragmatic approach to drug policy, with success measured by harm reduction rather than incarceration, Steves said that he is motivated to speak in favor of legalization because of its impact on civil liberties.
In the one day that the letter was going around the hill, NORML members and supporters drove in nearly 5,000 messages to Congress and countless phone calls in support of their Representative signing on.
Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Don Young (R-AK today filed a resolution, HR 4779, prohibiting the federal government from taking punitive action against those operating in states where the use and distribution of marijuana is legal.
Right now, today, Republican Representative Tom McClintock and Democratic Representative Jared Polis are circulating a letter in support of their amendment to defund the Department of Justice’s ability to enforce federal prohibition in the states that have reformed their marijuana laws, both for medical and responsible adult-use.
Today, sixty-four members of Congress representing both Republicans and Democrats sent a letter to Speaker Ryan, Senate Majority Leader McConnell, Leader Pelosi, and Leader Schumer urging them to maintain the federal protections for the 46 states that have implemented some form of medical cannabis programs throughout the country.
On Wednesday, October 11th, Congressional Cannabis Caucus Co-Chair Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) testified before the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health on how to deal with the opioid crisis in America.
The Cannabis Fund, a PAC created by Representative Earl Blumenauer to support cannabis-friendly candidates, will be hosting its first annual gala & awards on October 6th at the Marriott Waterfront in Portland, OR with NORML founder Keith Stroup as a featured speaker.
By the numbers:
– 140+ attendees
– 21 speakers
– 5 members of Congress
– 150+ congressional meetings
– 1 goal: End marijuana prohibition.
In a quick deal between President Trump and Congress, a three-month budget continuing resolution will be in effect until December 8, 2017, maintaining current spending levels.
While this seems mundane (it is), it is important for marijuana policy because it guarantees a temporary extension of the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer protections for lawful medical marijuana programs from Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Late Wednesday night, the House Rules Committee led by prohibitionist Representative Pete Sessions (R-TX) blocked multiple amendments related to marijuana from receiving consideration by the full House, thus ending their consideration and silencing the ability for the lower chamber to offer protections from Attorney General Jeff Sessions when it comes to cannabis.