Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his Justice Department has effectively shutdown a potential increase in the research of marijuana by the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Sessions has effective stopped the DEA from taking action on more than two dozen requests to grow marijuana to use in research, according to a report by The Washington Post.
As noted by the Post, a year ago the DEA began accepting applications to grow more marijuana for research, and as of this month, had received 25 proposals to consider. However, the DEA says they need the Justice Department to sign-off on more research in order to move forward, and so far, the department hasn’t been willing to provide it.
“They’re sitting on it,” said one law enforcement official familiar with the matter. “They just will not act on these things.” As a result, “the Justice Department has effectively shut down this program to increase research registrations”, says a senior DEA official.
DEA spokesman Rusty Payne said the agency “has always been in favor of enhanced research for controlled substances such as marijuana.”
Lauren Ehrsam, a Justice Department spokeswoman, declined to comment when requested by the Post.