Bipartisan Group of Federal Lawmakers Asks Trump to Intervene on Sessions’ Cole Memo Repeal

The Jan. 25 letter insists that states’ rights are an important pathway to a comprehensive marijuana policy.


Three weeks after a dramatic U.S. Department of Justice policy shift on state-legal marijuana programs, federal representatives from around the country have been pushing back and insisting on the legitimacy of states’ rights to regulate and enforce adult-use marijuana markets.

A bipartisan group of U.S representatives and U.S. senators wrote a letter to President Donald Trump today, requesting that he urge Attorney General Jeff Sessions to reinstate the Cole Memo, which had previously directed U.S. attorneys not to prioritize marijuana-related criminal prosecution in states that had legalized the use of the plant. Many of these politicians, including U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), have been especially vocal in the wake of Sessions’ decision. “This action has the potential to unravel efforts to build sensible drug policies that encourage economic development as we are finally moving away from antiquated practices that have hurt disadvantaged communities,” the letter states.

Read the full letter below.

The regulated markets in states like Colorado, which began overseeing legalized adult-use marijuana sales in January 2014, are based in large part on tenets set forth in the Cole Memo.

The federal legislators insist further that Trump himself deferred to states rights when the question of legal marijuana arose on the campaign trail. “I really believe we should leave [marijuana] up to the states,” Trump said. And on another occasion: “It’s got to be a state decision.”

Upon requesting that Trump follow up on this matter with Sessions, the letter concludes: “This step would create a pathway to a more comprehensive marijuana policy that respects state interests and prerogatives.”

Letter to Trump on Sessions' Withdrawal of the Cole Memo by sandydocs on Scribd

 

Top photo courtesy of Adobe Stock

Share This Content