Congressional Ban on Marijuana Prosecutions Poised to Become Law

December 17th, 2014

I previously praised an amendment to the Cromnibus in Congress that would prohibit DOJ from prosecuting marijuana crimes in states where it is legal. Now it looks like this provision is poised to become law.

Under the provision, states where medical pot is legal would no longer need to worry about federal drug agents raiding retail operations. Agents would be prohibited from doing so.

I think the amendment is broader, and would ban prosecutions in any state where distribution and possession is legal, whether medicinal or otherwise.

Although, as a reflection that not even newspapers know the difference between statutes and executive actions, the L.A. Times writes:

The Obama administration has largely followed that rule since last year as a matter of policy. But the measure approved as part of the spending bill, which President Obama plans to sign this week, will codify it as a matter of law.

I don’t think that means what they think it means.

Doug Berman reports that a defense attorney has moved to postpone a sentencing for a marijuana crime in California, until after the law is signed. At that point, DOJ would have to drop the prosecution.