Yesterday, July 24th, 2014, Senator Rand Paul, a Republican law maker from Kentucky, filed an Amendment to a bill being considered in the Senate that would federally legalize and recognize state medical marijuana programs.
Senate Bill 2569, also known as the Bring Jobs Home Act, has had 97 Amendments proposed to it as it has moved through the slow legislative process. The one Rand Paul filed yesterday, known as Amendment 3630, would bring an entire industry’s range of jobs to over twenty states, many of which are currently still operating on the gray/not-quite-legal market.
The full text and records of the Amendment will be available here shortly, but in the meantime a scan of the original document can be viewed here. It states that “a state may enact and implement a law that authorizes the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of marijuana for medical use.” The language also specifically protects patients and physicians from federal prosecution even if they are in direct violation of federal law, so long as they are compliant with state laws and regulations.
Should this Amendment and the bill it’s attached to pass, this would make a massive shift in Federal cannabis policy. Sadly, given the partisan politics in our senate, the passage of this Amendment is very unlikely. Republicans aren’t going to back Paul on this. In fact, it’s not very likely it will even go up for a vote.
Want to help? Contact your Senator and let them know that you support Amendment 3630 and any similar legislation that helps to protect state’s rights and end the federal policy of cannabis prohibition, especially medical cannabis prohibition. Don’t know who your senator is? You can look them up here with just your zip code. When calling or writing, remember that you catch more flies with sugar than honey. Re-framing the medical cannabis issue as a human rights issue, not a partisan one, will also help.
That way, even if this Amendment fails to be attached to the jobs bill, the politicians voting on it will know that their constituents expect them to take a rational, intelligent stand on the issue of ending the wasteful, destructive war on drugs, especially the war on cannabis.
Do you think this Amendment will come to a vote? Do you think there’s a faster or better approach to federal cannabis legalization? Sound off in the comments below!
Want to read more about efforts at federal legalization on Ladybud? Click here.
Photo Credit: By Gage Skidmore [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons