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Lawmakers Introduce Respect States' and Citizens' Rights Act

Posted on  November 27, 2012 by  News Admin

  Bipartisan Bill Introduced To Address Federal Preemption of State Marijuana Laws Would Clarify That States Can Determine Their Own Cannabis Policies A bipartisan group of legislators from around the country led by Rep. Diana DeGette  (D-Colorado) on Tuesday introduced a bill in Congress that would clarify that Colorado and Washington may fully implement the new marijuana laws approved by voters on November 6. The bill, known as the "Respect States' and Citizens' Rights Act," would add a provision to the federal Controlled Substances Act expressly stating that state marijuana laws shall not be preempted by federal law. Other sponsors of the legislation include Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO), Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO), Rep. Steven Cohen (D-TN), and Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ). "This is an extremely significant political event," said Steve Fox, director of state campaigns and government relations at the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). "These members of Congress, motivated by the recent votes in Colorado and Washington, are expressing their opinion that federal law should not undermine the wishes of voters in these states. "We have seen other members of Congress conveying similar sentiments in letters to the administration and in private meetings," Fox said. "A common theme uniting all of these actions is a recognition of the fact that the people of Colorado and Washington have voted to end marijuana prohibition and replace it with a system in which marijuana...

FBI Study Shows Marijuana Arrests Do Not Deter Use

Posted on  October 30, 2012 by  News Admin

  Report Shows Continued Arrests Near Record Levels While Use Rises   Marijuana arrests continued at near-record levels in 2011, the vast majority of which were for simple possession. According to the FBI's annual Uniform Crime Report, 757,969 arrests were made nationwide for marijuana, more than 87 percent of which were for possession. This is a slight decrease from 2010. Marijuana arrests accounted for slightly less than half of all drug arrests last year. In 2011, one American was arrested for marijuana possession every 42 seconds. Despite intensive law enforcement resources being used to arrest and punish marijuana users, rates of marijuana use continue to rise. The "National Survey on Drug Use and Health" -- commissioned by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and released in late September -- showed that marijuana use had slightly increased nationally between 2010 and 2011. According to the report, more than 29.7 million people aged 12 and older used marijuana at least once in the past year. "It's obvious that decades of law enforcement efforts have failed to reduce the availability or use of marijuana," said Rob Kampia, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project in Washington, D.C. "Arresting one American for marijuana possession every 42 seconds is an exercise in futility, especially when one considers that marijuana is safer than alcohol." "A business that continues to employ bad policies will eventually fail, but taxpayers are being forced to continually bail out the fiscally irresponsible and morally bankrupt institution of marijuana prohibition," Kampia said. "A majority of...