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Hearing Set for Jeff Sessions Attorney General Nomination

  • by Justin Strekal, NORML Political Director December 13, 2016

    Cannabis PenaltiesIt’s official, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley has set January 10-11, 2017 for the confirmation hearing of noted marijuana law reform opponent Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) to become the next Attorney General.

    Already it appears that Sen. Grassley will try to keep the hearings as short as possible and restrict the number of witnesses who testify. From the Judiciary Committee press release:

    “The hearings for the four most recent Attorneys General lasted one to two days each. At each of those hearings, three to nine outside witnesses testified.”

    It’s clear the hope is to rush the process as much as possible in order to obtain a successful confirmation given Sessions’ failed history of earning the approval of the Judiciary Committee for a previous judicial appointment in the 1980’s.

    In 1986, Sessions was appointed by the Reagan Administration to serve as a federal judge, yet his confirmation was voted down 8-10 in the Republican controlled committee, with two Republicans joining the Democrats in opposition over claims of racial prejudice, including off handed remarks about supporting the Ku Klux Klan until he discovered that they smoke marijuana. At the time, Sessions was just the second judicial federal appointee denied confirmation in 50 years.

    The implications for marijuana policies at the state level could be dire. As recently as April of this year, during a Senate hearing, Sessions proclaimed that “good people do not use marijuana.” How a potential Attorney General Sessions would treat the 29 states that have legalized medicinal or recreational marijuana is still unclear and could prove devastating to the decades of hard-fought progress that we have made on behalf of responsible marijuana users.

    TAKE ACTION: Email your Senators and tell them to not approve Jeff Sessions as the Attorney General

    39 Responses to “Hearing Set for Jeff Sessions Attorney General Nomination”

    1. Maturin says:

      And we will be a thorn in his side.

    2. Buster Jones says:

      Stop Jeff. Sessions. He hates marijuana with a passion. Peace, Buster Jones.

    3. Mark Mitcham says:

      People, we need to make sure EVERY SENATOR from EVERY STATE has been advised! Now is the time for EVERYONE to pitch in!

      If you’ve never emailed your Senators before, NOW is the time to participate. If you’re uncomfortable giving them your personal information, remember: you’re an “armchair warrior” now, so break out of your comfort zone, and take a stand! (…while sitting!)

      It’s your RIGHT, and, if you care about marijuana legalization, it’s your DUTY to let your Senators know how you feel about it. They work for you! Put them to task, NOW.

      Thank you.

      • Keith Kropf says:

        Well said Mark! It’s not hard, doesn’t take much time. Put out a little effort and let’s be heard! END PROHIBITION! Never worked, never will!

    4. TheOracle says:

      This guy is standing in the way of taking marijuana out of the hands of violent (Mexican) cartels and into the control of a market regulated and policed by the government–not thugs–and into the hands of U.S. citizens who are paying taxes, creating jobs, and who are visible and can be held accountable, you know, not an invisible network of people in the shadows.

      If not Sessions, then who? I certainly do NOT want Sessions as he is a scorpion who will sting us! Who are my other alternatives? Who are the cannabis community’s options?

    5. Julian says:

      Hello Justin. Please make the Take Action link up front and accessible on this blog;

      http://salsa3.salsalabs.com/o/51046/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=19683

      I find it very distressing that contacting our Senators to block this nomination of treasonous hatred to our office of the AG is not the full priority of this blog and website. If we cant expect the electoral college to do their job today and vote in another candidate when Trump treasonously denies a press conference to explain his unconstitutional emoluments from Trump projects around tyrranical parts of the world, despotically praises a mass murderer Duterte for killing his own people in conspiracy of Drug possession or at least stop Trump from encouraging espionage from the Russians to subdue our Democratic Republic, then the very least we can expect is to block the nomination of a domestic terrorist who was already blocked from Judicial position 30 years ago. Praising the KKK “until I found out they smoked pot,” was a fascist praise of one of America’s oldest domestic terrorist groups and upholds the state sanctioned terror that is marijuana prohibition.
      Post the link to our Senators to block Sessions.
      http://salsa3.salsalabs.com/o/51046/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=19683
      Failure to do so is almost complicit with treason.

    6. Renee S. says:

      “Good people do not use marijuana” how dare he say that! My past includes volunteer work after Hurricane Andrew, as well as so much of my life spent giving. I never mention this but the article really made me angry.

      After 20 yrs. of being on very high doses of opioids I deceived to stop July 4th of this yr. I had no cravings and I know 100% it was due to my use of medical marijuana. I had my last 22 hr. Surgery 3 yrs. ago and today I have 54 screws, 4 rods and a neck plate. I also must wear a brace on my leg to walk. Without medical marijuana I would feel the intense muscular and nerve pain that I live with 24/7.

      Please, once and for all, keep marijuana legal in CA & make it legal nationally.

    7. Jeffrey says:

      Common sense is being AWARE the pain needs no more Chemical drugs but God made His Medicine instead

    8. Fireweed says:

      At this point I think there would be a huge pushback against any attempts to repeal state laws on medical or recreational. There are too many people on board with it and too few problems have emerged for there to be enough people to want to repeal the laws. I have to think even state governments won’t want to lose the tax revenue and are perhaps noticing other benefits such as decreased crime, shorter hospital stays, and if it were tracked long enough, probably a correlating decrease in diabetes and heart disease.

    9. Evening Bud says:

      I have already called the offices of my two Senators, asking them to reject prohibitionist Sessions.

    10. Julian says:

      https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/about/members

      http://www.norml.org/congressional-scorecard

      Here’s the latest scoop on Sessions being sent a letter by fellow member of the Senate Judiciary, Democratic Senator Blumenthal, to recuse himself from nomination:

      http://ctmirror.org/2016/12/08/blumenthal-tells-sessions-to-abstain-from-voting-on-his-own-confirmation/

      As all six preceding nominees have done when they are on the Senate Judiciary Committee, which currently holds 9 Democrats and 10 Republicans.
      I predict all the Democrats but Feinstein vote him down. (Maaaaybe Feinstein can be persuaded considering Sessions civil rights record and the fact that Sessions voted against her when she had her emails hacked by the CIA).
      As for the Republicans on the committee, of course Chairman Chuck Grassley is no friend of legalization.
      But the wild cards here are Senators Lindsay Graham, who has already shown some desire to stand up to Trump, and has a B- on the NORML Congressional scorecard.
      Senator Tillis from North Carolina has a C score and is definitely worth lobbying and calling immediately.
      Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona has a C score and is a Libertarian. He is a hopeful challenger to a Sessions nomination and should be lobbied by his own constituency heavily.
      Both Texas Senators are on the Judiciary, and even though Cornyn is deep in the pockets of asset forfeitures with a blaring F on the scorecard, I write them both repeatedly. Here is an interesting test for Cruz, who has a C for some reason, to test if he really meant that states should have the right to practice marijuana policy. When Blumenthal asks Sessions if he will persue a federal law suit to attack state legalization, Cruz needs to be held to the fire so he doesn’t flip flop on us like he did with mandatory minimums. Of course Cruz doesn’t have much backbone, as he demonstrated when he went to fetch Trump’s shine box at the end of the campaign.

      • Julian says:

        “Dear Julian,

        Thank you for your recent letter regarding the nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions for U.S. Attorney General. I appreciate having the benefit of your comments on this important nomination.

        Americans deserve an Attorney General who is impartial, honest, and dedicated to upholding the law. Politics and ideology should never interfere with our justice system.

        Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama is qualified and prepared to serve the United States as Attorney General. Guided by a strong sense of duty evident in his last five decades in public service, Senator Sessions has devoted his life to the people of Alabama and the United States. As a federal prosecutor, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama, and as Alabama’s Attorney General and U.S. Senator, Senator Sessions’ career reflects an earnest commitment to do what is right.

        I know Senator Sessions well, and I am confident he will preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States with honor and distinction. As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and as a colleague of Senator Sessions, I look forward to questioning and supporting him throughout the confirmation process.

        I appreciate having the opportunity to represent you in the United States Senate. Thank you for taking the time to contact me.

        Sincerely,

        JOHN CORNYN

        United States Senator”

        Expected from a Senator with an “F” on the NORML scorecard… Senator Cornyn is on the Judiciary Committee. But to say that “Politics and ideology should never interfere with the law,” deserves a fine slap in the face for Senator Cornyn. “Impartial” Senator Cornyn? If the sentence “I didn’t have any problems with the KKK until I found out they smoked pot” was enough to block Judicial nomination for Sessions 30 years ago it damn sure still is now.

        • The Fabes says:

          Is it possible to send letters to the 20 members of the Senate Judiciary Committee individually? Maybe this is our next step?

          • Julian says:

            Of course; the link above is for us to write our own Senators, which is why it is so vital for NORML chapters to unite so we can write/greet and lobby EVERY Senator with a shred of love for our Democratic Republic. To be more effective Senators need to hear from their own voting constituents. And NORML members need to ramp up donations to recurreing automatic monthly withdrawals of at least $10. This is the climax of our Great American Cannabis Tragedy. It began with the recent elections. No one said the climax would last a day.

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