United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions today announced that the Justice Department has rescinded, effective immediately, Obama administration guidelines – known as the Cole memorandum – which directed US attorneys to not interfere with those compliant with state cannabis laws.
“By rescinding the Cole Memo, Jeff Sessions is acting on his warped desire to return America to the failed beliefs of the ‘Just Say No’ and Reefer Madness eras. This action flies in the face of sensible public policy and broad public opinion. The American people overwhelmingly support the legalization of marijuana and oppose federal intervention in state marijuana laws by an even wider margin. This move by the Attorney General will prove not just to be a disaster from a policy perspective, but from a political one. The American people will not just sit idly by while he upends all the progress that has been made in dialing back the mass incarceration fueled by marijuana arrests and destabilizes an industry that is now responsible for over 150,000 jobs. Ending our disgraceful war on marijuana is the will of the people and the Trump Administration can expect severe backlash for opposing it,” said Erik Altieri, NORML Executive Director.
This move by the administration runs contrary to the wishes of the overwhelming majority of US voters, including majorities of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents – who support the regulation of adult cannabis use and also believe that determining marijuana policy ought to be a state issue, not a federal one.
Today, one in five Americans resides in a jurisdiction where the adult use of cannabis is legal under state statute, and the majority of citizens reside someplace where the medical use of cannabis is legally authorized. It is time for Congressional representatives in these districts to step up and defend the rights of their constituents – many of whom rely on these policies for their health and welfare.
Together we can fight this,
The NORML Team