Florida Attorney General ‘Just Says No’ To Medical Marijuana

  • by Allen St. Pierre, Former NORML Executive Director December 21, 2012

    Please find below a recent memo from Florida Attorney General’s office rejecting activist’s petition to reschedule marijuana for medical access. This is notable because Florida is a top five political bellwether state, with an aging population, NORML receives more requests from Florida residents than anywhere else in the country to reform local medical cannabis laws.

    Unfortunately, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi’s office has rejected a petition from the Cannabis Action Network to reschedule cannabis so that sick, dying and sense-threatened medical patients with a doctor’s recommendation can possess and use it legally. As often is the case at the state level, the Attorney General is deferring to federal laws and Congressional intent.


    Administrative Law Bureau

    Edward A. Tellechea
    Chief Assistant Attorney General
    PL-01, The Capitol
    Tallahassee, FL 32399-1050
    Phone (850) 414-3300
    Fax (850) 922-6425

    December 12, 2012

    Jodi James
    Director, Cannabis Action Network
    Melbourne, FL

    Ms. James:

    Thank you for your petition wherein you request that the Attorney
    General temporarily reschedule cannabis. I have been asked to
    respond on the Attorney General’s behalf.

    Section 893.0355, Florida Statutes, delegates to the Attorney
    General the authority to temporarily reschedule controlled
    substances set forth in Section 893.03(1), Florida Statutes, by rule
    and addresses what factors shall be considered when making such a
    determination. The statute reads in part as follows:

    (3) In making the public interest determination, the Attorney
    General shall give great weight to the scheduling rules adopted by
    the United States Attorney General subsequent to such substances
    being listed in Schedules I, II, III, IV, and V hereof, to achieve
    the original legislative purpose of the Florida Comprehensive Drug
    Abuse Prevention and Control Act of maintaining uniformity between
    the laws of Florida and the laws of the United States with respect
    to controlled substances.

    The above quoted statutory language makes it very clear that when
    determining whether a controlled substance should be rescheduled the
    Attorney General must give great weight to the current drug
    scheduling under federal law. In addition, Florida law also strongly
    encourages uniformity in Florida and federal drug scheduling.

    The Attorney General does not believe that it is in the best
    interest of the public for her to use her authority to temporarily
    reschedule cannabis, particularly given the legislative preference
    for uniformity with federal drug laws and the fact that cannabis
    remains a Schedule I drug under federal law.


    Edward A. Tellechea
    Chief Assistant Attorney General

    94 responses to “Florida Attorney General ‘Just Says No’ To Medical Marijuana”

    1. Dave says:

      A weak excuse. Conformity to crap is not in Florida’s best interest. What I just read says, ‘I can’t make a decision and defer to those who also didn’t bother making a decision. Here, have slice of this shitpie’ Just read the name of this law, “Florida Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act”. Letting people access marjiuana will reduce the amount of dangerous drugs that are killing people and it is completely in line with “Drug Abuse Prevention”.

      Why isn’t this attorney general sending a letter to the feds asking for an exemption? Too lazy to do the job?

    2. RUT says:

      i would say that Pam Bondi wants to keep her head in the sand and continue the WAR ON THE PEOPLE. I believe FLORIDA is headed in a new direction come the next election . This currant administration is polling at about a 38% approval rate. Florida is a changing state and the old guard drug warriors are nearly out the door. they just can not give up seizing property,arresting young people for smoking a harmless plant and jailing them. its your young people these do gooders want to ruin the lives of! To continue on they have to ignore facts and the direction a now majority of our people want to take concerning prohibition as well as ignoring the seniors who want the benefits of medical marijuana. California has had medical MJ for almost 15 years and the world did not end. The effort to keep marijuana a class I substance when it does not even meet the governments own criteria of a class I substance is beyond me. FLORIDA COULD DECRIMINALIZE SMALL AMOUNTS AT THE VERY LEAST. This state is a big player and should join the movement for legalization. But as for the mindless babble coming out of our state house I say just wait. A new governor is on the way. FLORIDA could sure could use the revenue from legalization. BUT I WOULD NOT EXPECT MUCH FROM RICK SCOTT &CO.. Identify these politicians and vote them out.

    3. David says:

      As someone in a political career, and who wishes to continue in that career, she’s not going to rock the boat. What did you expect she’d do?

    4. R Andrew Ohge says:

      It appears it’s about time for this tool of big Pharma to be told “No!” to another term of office. Should she and her minions wish to continue Prohibition, it’s “high time” THEY ponied up the dollars for it.

    5. Jason says:

      Another moron at the top. It shouldn’t suprise anyone, these people can’t even count votes.There are lines out the door at the meth clinics, pop your pill, (who cares about the pills side effects) get in your car and come back next week, that is if your not dead from an OD after getting the rest of the pills on the street. Unfortunately I live here and I can’t wait to get out!

    6. WISEMAN says:

      lost me vote 🙁 losers

    7. Dave K says:

      It is truly barbaric for anyone to deny medicine to people. Marijuana is medicine. Between 1840 and 1900 about half of the prescriptions written by doctors contained cannabis. Over 100 papers were reported in medical literature of that time. Google marijuana and cancer. You will find that not only is it used to treat side effects of chemotherapy but that medicine in the plant has direct anti tumor properties.

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    9. Galileo Galilei says:

      Frankly, the Federal scheduling amounts to an outright, untenable lie. Seems like she just couldn’t summon the courage needed to make the right decision for the people of Florida.

    10. Gweedo says:

      This is really not surprising at all. Some parts of Florida are extremely conservative. FL does not rate high on my list of states likely to reform their cannabis laws.