Holds office U.S. Senate
Today, a bipartisan group of U.S. Senators, including Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA), sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions expressing concern that the Trump administration may begin enforcing federal law in states that have legalized marijuana. It asks the U.S. Department of Justice to clarify the Trump administration's policy on law enforcement in states that have legalized the recreational use of marijuana.
The letter was prompted by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer's remarks during his briefing on February 23rd, suggesting that the public would soon see "greater enforcement" against any state that has legalized use of the drug. Federal law still outlaws the use of marijuana.
"It is essential that states that have implemented any type of practical, effective marijuana policy receive immediate assurance from the DOJ that it will respect the ability of states to enforce thoughtful, sensible drug policies in ways that do not threaten the public's health and safety," the senators wrote. "This ensures that state infrastructure, including tax revenue, small businesses, and jobs, can be protected; DOJ resources can be used most effectively; and most importantly, that marijuana can be properly regulated to improve public health and safety."
"Washington state's U.S. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell wrote to the Department of Justice Tuesday, asking for answers on Washington state's legalization of recreational marijuana. The Democratic senators, along with five Democratic members of the House representing Washington state, urged U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to avoid preempting the state's new marijuana law. They also asked him not to prosecute anyone in the state who is acting in compliance with Washington's marijuana law."
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