Washington, D.C. – The legalization of marijuana has been approved in 29 states, including Washington, D.C. However, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is still raring to go when it comes to his fight against marijuana.
The former senator from Alabama has been in office as Attorney General since last February. Upon assumption of office, he created a task force that aimed to pursue and penalize the users and distributors of cannabis. However, the task force wasn’t successful in its goal and failed to produce new policy suggestions.
According to Sessions, he will continue reviewing recommendations of the Task Force, and plan for additional ways to ensure safer American communities by banning the use of marijuana. The Attorney General might even try reinterpreting the Cole Memo.
The Cole Memo was issued by James Cole, the former Deputy Attorney General. It asked lawyers to have a detached approach to the legalization of marijuana. For Sessions, the Department of Justice should remain dedicated to banning the use and distribution of marijuana.
This led to letters sent by the Governors of Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington. They asked Sessions to reconsider his statement. They further expressed that the current marijuana industry could be forced to resort to the black market if the regulation is changed.
In a letter last April, Sessions gave his response, addressed to Washington Governor Jay Inslee and Robert Ferguson, the state’s Attorney General. According to the letter, the distribution of marijuana must remain a crime because of the risk it poses to the health and safety of the public.
He also included federal reports and questioned the effectiveness of the states’ measures to regulate the drug.
As for Inslee, he was proud of his state’s performance in the industry and stated that he was eager to pursue ways to guarantee a stable market for marijuana. He also said that Sessions’ data and reports were not showing accurate outcomes of the state’s efforts in regulating marijuana since it started in 2014. There are also advocacy groups who do not agree with Sessions’ statements.
The leader of one such group, CEO Andrew Hard of CMW Media/Medical Marijuana Inc., said that Sessions’ approach for the reversal of marijuana legalization is an old-fashioned “personal vendetta.” Hard added that Sessions doesn’t even care if the economy of several states is increasing because of the industry.