House of Representatives Votes to Protect State MMJ And Hemp Programs

The U.S. House of Representatives reauthorized an amendment that prohibits the Justice Department from interfering with medical marijuana programs in states where such programs are legal.

Reps. Dana Rohrabacher (R.-CA) and Sam Farr (D.-CA) attached the amendment to the 2016 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies appropriations bill. It passed 242-186.

Rohrabacher defended the amendment in a strongly worded address Wednesday morning:

“This is absolutely absurd that the federal government is going to mandate all these things even though the people of the states and many doctors would like to have the right to prescribe to their patients what they think will alleviate their suffering. This is states’ rights issue. Our founding fathers didn’t want a police force that can bust down people’s doors. They wanted individual freedom.”

Before it can go into effect, the House amendment would have to pass a joint Conference with the Senate, which is likely to propose its own DEA appropriations bill.

Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA) proposed a second amendment that protects states that have authorized the medicinal use of marijuana oil extracts. It passed 297-130.

Lastly, the House approved a third amendment, proposed by Reps. Thomas Massie (R.-KY) and Suzanne Bonamici (D.-OR), that prevents the DEA from interfering with state-approved hemp programs.


Photo Credit: Paull Young

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