U.S.: Bernie Sanders Calls The DEA Decision On Marijuana 'Absurd'
By Derrick Stanley
Bernie Sanders and other Democrats have been unhappy with the DEA's recent decision to refuse to reschedule marijuana. The Drug Enforcement Administration had said earlier this year that they would make a decision on whether or not to reschedule marijuana. The decision was made to change nothing, and so marijuana remains grouped with the most harmful substances in America.
The DEA claims that there is “no currently accepted medical use in the United States” for marijuana and so it will remain on the list of Schedule I drugs. Bernie Sanders and many other Americans believe this is a big fat lie. A majority of Americans now believe the substance should be made legal, and the DEA is clearly ignoring the wants and needs of the American public.
Sanders tweeted after the DEA's announcement that “keeping marijuana in the same category as heroin is absurd. The time is long overdue for us to remove the federal prohibition on marijuana.”
He followed up with another tweet, saying “if we are serious about criminal justice reform, we must remove marijuana from the federal Controlled Substance Act.”
Rep. Barbara Lee, a Democratic congresswoman, spoke in support of legalizing medical marijuana and recently tweeted, “Politicians aren’t doctors or scientists. Marijuana research prohibitions are outdated, unscientific, & dangerous for those who need #MMJ.”
Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) said, “it is ridiculous to classify marijuana alongside other Schedule I drugs like heroin. This is further evidence that it is past time that Congress legalize and regulate marijuana like alcohol, using Colorado as an example.”
Democrat Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon explained how the DEA’s decision was negatively impacting states like his own.
“In Oregon alone, it is estimated that the marijuana market could bring in close to half a billion dollars in revenue, all in cash, during its first 14 months of legal sales,” said Merkley. “The federal government shouldn’t force Oregon’s legal marijuana businesses to carry gym bags full of cash to pay their taxes, employees, and bills. Expanding access to marijuana for research is helpful but doesn’t solve these problems. It’s clear now that Congress must take action to end the confusing patchwork of state and federal laws and regulations so that businesses in states that have legalized medicinal and recreational marijuana can access banking services, additional federal research can be conducted, and Veterans Affairs doctors can finally discuss medicinal marijuana with patients.”
Democrat in July announced that they would be backing the de-scheduling of marijuana. The democratic stand on marijuana is starting to show with several Democrats beginning to publicly criticize the DEA for impeding marijuana legalization.