WASHINGTON (AP) — Alaska Republican Rep. Don Young says he never smoked marijuana, but he’s a member of the newest caucus on Capitol Hill – the Cannabis Caucus.
Four House members announced the formation of the caucus on Thursday. While the name elicits smiles, the lawmakers said their intentions are serious: Keep federal policies from interfering with states as they enact laws that allow for recreational or medical marijuana.
“I believe in states’ rights. Alaska voted to legalize it, pretty large margin,” said Young, 83. “The federal government should stay out of it, period.”
Eight states and the District of Columbia have legalized small amounts of marijuana for adult recreational use. Another 28 states have legalized medical marijuana. The members of the newest caucus said they expect strong interest in joining their group based on the state trends.
“Once a state has acted, members of Congress are interested in defending and working with their constituencies,” said Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo.
The leaders of the group include two Republicans, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher of California and Young. The Democratic co-chairmen are Rep. Earl Blumenauer of Oregon and Polis.
For the record, the lawmakers, for the most part, said they don’t use marijuana. Young said he’s never used it and doesn’t really believe in it. Polis said he’s never used it either. Blumenauer said he is going to wait until marijuana is legal federally before using it. Rohrabacher said he recently had surgery on his arm and placed a candle infused with cannabis on it because of the pain.
“I got sleep for the first time in weeks after that,” he said.
Among the group’s goals: Keep the federal government from blocking research into marijuana for medical purposes and make it easier for marijuana businesses to operate. The businesses generally can’t accept credit or debit cards due to card companies’ fears about liability for money laundering or other offenses. Nor can they fully deduct their business expenses, Blumenauer said.
Survey Indicates Teen Marijuana Use in Colorado is Lower Than National Average
Family of Man Killed by Bulldozer After Growing Pot Sues Police
Ban on Smokable Medical Marijuana Officially Repealed in Florida
High Folks: Yareem Barnes-Ivey Balances the Two Worlds of Cannabis
Knowledgeable Dabbing: A Guide To Our Favorite Quartz Bangers
First Clinical Trial Of Cannabis For PTSD in Veterans Is Now Complete
Missouri Police Raid Hospital Room of Stage 4 Cancer Patient Using Cannabis
Oklahoma House Passes Medical Cannabis Protection Bill
News5 days ago
Indiana State Trooper Seizes $3.5 Million Worth of Cannabis, Vapes
News5 days ago
Colorado Researchers Seeking Volunteers to Get High and Drive
News6 days ago
Study Finds Medical Marijuana Alleviates Seniors’ Pain, Reduces Opioid Use
News7 days ago
Survey Shows 25% of Cannabis Users in Legal States Consume at Work
Legalization6 days ago
Breaking: Connecticut Lawmakers Unveil Plan to Legalize Marijuana
Culture4 days ago
The New “Miss Marijuana” Pageant Comes With Outdated Guidelines and Transphobia
News7 days ago
$2.5 Million Worth of Marijuana Seized at Philadelphia Port
Grow6 days ago
An Interview With Dinafem Seeds: Europe’s King Of Feminized Seeds