Federal Measure Introduced to Form National Commission on Federal Marijuana Policy

  • by Erik Altieri, NORML Communications Director April 18, 2013

    Lets Be HonestRepresentative Steve Cohen (D-TN) has introduced federal legislation that would establish a National Commission on Federal Marijuana Policy. The proposed commission, inspired by the 1971 Shafer Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, would be tasked with undertaking a comprehensive review of how federal policy should interact with state laws that make marijuana legal for medicinal and personal use, the cost of our current marijuana prohibition and potential revenue from marijuana regulation and taxation, the impact of federal banking and tax laws on marijuana related businesses, the health benefits of risk of marijuana use, the public safety and criminal justice implications of marijuana prohibition compared with regulation, and the effects of marijuana prohibition and potential regulation on our international relationships and treaties.

    “Regardless of your views on marijuana, it’s important that we understand the impact of current federal policy and address the conflict with those state laws that allow for medicinal or personal use of marijuana,” said Congressman Cohen. “This conflict is only going to continue to grow over the next few years and we must provide certainty to the millions of individuals and businesses that remain caught in a web of incompatible laws. A national commission would provide us with the information we need to create sensible policy going forward.”

    Representative Steve Cohen is joined by Representatives Jared Polis (D-CO), Earl Blumenhauer (D-OR), Jim Moran (D-VA), and Sam Farr (D-CA).

    During an interview with Barbara Walters in December of 2012, President Obama stated, “…what we’re going to need to have is a conversation about, how do you reconcile a federal law that still says marijuana is a federal offense and state laws that say that it’s legal?”

    Drug Czar Gil Kerlikowske stated in January of this year that, “Coming out of the recent election, it is clear that we’re in the midst of a serious national conversation about marijuana.”

    “The Obama administration has repeatedly stated that a national conversation is needed when it comes to our country’s marijuana policies, but so far that conversation has been largely one sided,” stated NORML Communications Director Erik Altieri, “It is time for federal lawmakers to listen to the voice of the majority of Americans who want to see change to our nation’s marijuana laws and for them to take part in that dialogue. NORML is pleased to have worked with Representative Cohen and his staff on this important legislation that would provide a public and professional venue for that conversation to take place. A majority of Americans agree that it is time for the United States to end it’s fruitless and expensive war on cannabis consumers and pursue policies of regulation and taxation. Enjoining this national commission would be a pragmatic and productive step towards assessing the true costs of our current prohibition and creating a framework for a functional federal policy on marijuana.”

    Join NORML and federal legislators in calling for a “serious national conversation” on regulating marijuana.

    Click here to quickly and easily contact your Representative and urge him or her to support this legislation.

    26 Responses to “Federal Measure Introduced to Form National Commission on Federal Marijuana Policy”

    1. ralph says:

      maybe there should be protests around the country one day or weekend or month?these politicians wont listen to anything unless people stand up and voice their opinion.i bet if people petitioned to make alcohol illegal they would listen.

    2. Dave Evans says:

      Study the War on Drugs and how to make it actually work. We have already studied marijuana to death and all we need to do is remove it from any and all drug schedules–the studies have already been done. Fifty years ago people already knew marijuana is not a narcotic. It already is black and white for Marijuana and “how it should be handled going forward”. We use facts in the United States of America not conjecture and damaged ideologies to tell who and what is causing crime.

      The War on Marijuana is pure corruption because marijuana isn’t a drug; it is just “marijuana” more of a un-drug. The War on Drugs is worthless because it militarized(!!! Why???) and they don’t bother addressing why people would rather erase their minds than deal with their issues and alcohol should be included. Oh and get rid of the scheduling system and make a new system that uses facts people can actually measure. How is alcohol or tobacco not on schedule one??? Oh yeah, they are full of shit and their schedule is worthless.

    3. Dave Evans says:

      Julian, that is my point. Most everyone who has worked as a police officer, doctor, and other areas where they get to interact with the public already knows Marijuana is harmless to our society. We going to have a study to confirm the sky is blue as well?

      The problem is crackers do not want other people to get ahead. They are cutting off our noses to spite their faces. We have been “studying” this shit for seventy years. I’m done “studying” the issue. Start arresting these pieces of shit already.

    4. Julian says:

      Ive read many white house petitions to legalize marijuana. But none seem to get to the root of the problem; That we even allow an executive agency, the DEA, to legislate marijuana law in the first place. Please help me with my first and only white house petition. Here is a link:
      Its rediculous that we allow cops to write law in thr first place. It’s no wonder the Controlled Substance Act has amendments like asset forfeiture and finances to deny marijuana is medicine so that the DEA budget is so fat that cops are permited to write law without Congressional oversight.
      Lets end the made-to-fail Drug Wars. Theres a reason we have three branches of government. lets keep it that way.

    5. Jullian says:

      @ Dale,
      We do need a government study. Even if the feds reject it. We need dollar signs, numbers and math to pass a bill, not just American votes. The only vote we have with this Congress is to give them a marijuana voting test and vote them in or out in 2014.
      The Supreme Court ruling over small posessions not being enough to deport immigrants shows where this battle will end up if Congress doesn’t compromise soon.

    6. Dave Evans says:

      I’m not sure what the point might be? They are just going to say, like everyone else that knows what they are talking about, that marijuana should be legal. What is there to “study”??? Is this just another way to waste more money?

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