Jan 04, 2018

States Should Have the Freedom to Enact and Enforce Their Own Marijuana Laws

Post by Freedom Partners

Arlington, VA — Today, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is expected to unveil a new policy that will give federal prosecutors more leeway to override states and more aggressively enforce federal marijuana laws.

According to a report in the New York Times, “the Justice Department is expected to rescind an Obama-era policy of discouraging federal prosecutors from bringing charges of marijuana-related crimes in states that had legalized sales of the drug.”

To date, six states and the District of Columbia have legalized the recreational use of marijuana.

Freedom Partners Chairman Mark Holden issued the following statement:

“While we are encouraged by the White House’s overall commitment to criminal justice reform, we are disappointed by the Attorney General’s decision to undermine the 10th Amendment, which gives states the right to enact and enforce their own laws. Many states are reforming their criminal justice systems for the better, and when it comes to marijuana laws, we agree with President Trump that it’s ‘up to the states.’

“At a time when our prisons are wildly overcrowded and taxpayers are forced to spend hundreds of billions of dollars each year to fund a failed War on Drugs, we believe it’s time for a new, smarter approach to drug policy that is sensible and truly makes our neighborhoods safe. Instead of prosecuting non-violent individuals for an act that has already been legalized in half a dozen states and decriminalized in several others, this administration should work with Congress to reform our outdated federal sentencing laws, which ruin lives, tear apart families and communities, and place a massive burden on hardworking taxpayers.”