In a shocking, and possible disastrous move, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has rescinded several Obama-era directives that discouraged enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states that had legalized the substance. This could spell doom for the progress made by states like Colorado, Oregon, and as of January 1, California. Cali is expected to become the largest marijuana industry in the US. Well, it was. With this move and the daily chaos of the inept Trump administration, who knows how this will shake out? But for now, it’s smart to take this seriously.
In a memo sent to U.S. attorneys Thursday, Sessions noted that federal law prohibits the possession and sale of marijuana, and he undid four previous Obama administration memos that advised against bringing weed prosecutions in states where it was legal to use for recreational or medical purposes. Sessions said prosecutors should use their own discretion — taking into consideration the department’s limited resources, the seriousness of the crime, and the deterrent effect that they could impose — in weighing whether charges were appropriate.
“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 and the ability of our local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement partners to carry out this mission,” Sessions said in a statement. “Therefore, today’s memo on federal marijuana enforcement simply directs all U.S. Attorneys to use previously established prosecutorial principles that provide them all the necessary tools to disrupt criminal organizations, tackle the growing drug crisis, and thwart violent crime across our country.”
OK, so let’s be real here, folks. This move shouldn’t have come as a surprise given the racist elf from Alabama’s history of being a backward redneck authoritarian senator, and his blowhard comments since being appointed Attorney General. He is from the very state which narrowly chose not to elect an alleged(multiple times) child molester rather than a Democrat, in its recent special election to fill the same seat Sessions vacated for his AG position. The part I am having trouble with is how the same Republican party which claims to value states’ rights, capitalism, job-creation, and ending the opioid epidemic, can do this with a straight face. It’s a cynical, regressive action that could lead to not only lost tax revenue and lost jobs but lost lives as well.
In Oregon alone, 20,000 jobs have been created in the cannabis industry. In every single state with legal cannabis, opioid deaths are down in dramatic numbers. And perhaps most relevant to the free-market whores currently in power, tax revenue for cannabis sales is expected to reach around $20 billion by 2021. I would love to see Sessions, or anyone, attempt to justify this move against the aforementioned facts. I am sure they will try, and I am certain it will be as flimsy and illogical as nearly every other action taken by this fraudulent government of opportunists and authoritarians.
The Daily Leaf will be covering every new development in this shitshow as it unfolds.