Attorney General Calls for End to Protections for State-Legal MMJ Businesses
May 5, President Trump signed the current federal budget bill, which included an extension of the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment’s coverage—forbidding the use of federally appropriated funds to interfere with state-authorized medical marijuana programs—through September 2017.
This week, however, Attorney General Jeff Sessions called on congressional leaders to reconsider their support of the amendment. In a letter—which was made public this week (first by Tom Angell of MassRoots and verified by The Washington Post)—to Senators Mitch McConnell and Charles Schumer, Speaker Paul Ryan and Representative Nancy Pelosi, Sessions wrote:
“I write to renew the Department of Justice’s opposition to the inclusion of language in any appropriations legislation that would prohibit the use of Department of Justice funds or in any way inhibit its authority to enforce the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).
As you know, the most recent continuing resolution contained a rider that restricts the Department from using appropriated funds to prevent certain states ‘from implementing their own State laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of medical marijuana,’ even though marijuana remains unlawful under the Controlled Substances Act.”
To gain a better understanding of what the Attorney General’s letter may mean to medical cannabis businesses, as well as explore the chances that the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment will become obsolete, Cannabis Business Times Editor Noelle Skodzinski talked with Steve Fox, director of VS Strategies (an affiliate of marijuana law firm Vicente Sederberg), which is focused on lobbying and advocacy. Fox has personally been involved in marijuana lobbying at the federal level since 2002.