After the latest federal government shutdown, which lasted for just a few hours on Feb. 9, the U.S. Congress approved a short-term spending bill that will extend funding through March 23. And, once again, this new budget deal includes the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, which prevents the U.S. Department of Justice from spending federal dollars on the prosecution of medical marijuana operations in states where they’ve been deemed legal.
This is the eighth time that the amendment has been given an extension via short-term congressional spending bill.
The last time this happened, up against a Jan. 19 deadline, the House Rules Committee held a spirited debate on the merits of marijuana legalization. While various members shared either support or opposition for broader legislation, the committee did not specifically address whether the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment would ever be made into a permanent fix—or whether it might be dropped from future spending bills.
We’ve reached out to U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer’s office to get a sense of what the future might hold for this amendment—and whether he and fellow co-sponsor U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher can develop a more long-lasting solution to the matter at hand.
We’ll revisit this issue on March 23.
Top photo courtesy of Adobe Stock