WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote Tuesday evening or Wednesday on several spending limitations intended to roll back the federal government’s war on marijuana.
Several marijuana-related amendments will be offered to the FY 2016 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies appropriations bill, and at least two of them would limit the manner in which funds can be spent by the Department of Justice, which includes the Drug Enforcement Administration.
This week, when the U.S. House of Representatives is expected to consider an appropriations bill related to military construction and Veterans Affairs, Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) plans to offer an amendment to make it easier for qualified veterans to access medical cannabis. The amendment will be cosponsored by Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY), Sam Farr (D-CA) and Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA).
“While there is no single approach to aiding our nation’s veterans, medical marijuana is proven to help in treating post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries frequently suffered by veterans,” said Congressman Blumenauer in a Monday press release. “States are listening to their residents on the benefits of medical marijuana, including veterans, and are changing their laws. It is unacceptable for our wounded warriors to be forced out of the VA system to simply seek a recommendation on whether or not medical marijuana is a good treatment option. We should not be preventing access to medicine that can help them deal with these injuries to survive and thrive. I encourage my colleagues to show compassion to our veterans and pass this amendment.”
A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced legislation Wednesday that would prohibit the government from prosecuting individuals or businesses for cannabis-related crimes if they’re in compliance with their state’s cannabis laws.
The Respect State Marijuana Laws Act of 2015 (House Resolution 1940) was introduced Wednesday with Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) as the primary sponsor. Five other Republicans, and six Democrats, have signed on as cosponsors of the bill.