Today of all days, it seems appropriate to update you on our marijuana reform efforts in Congress.
More and more states are following Oregon’s leadership in legalizing and regulating marijuana. Although 95 percent of Americans now live in states or territories that permit, to varying degrees, legal access to medical marijuana and/or cannabis derivatives, marijuana is still treated the same as heroin at the federal level. It makes no sense. Clearly, current federal law is out of touch with the majority of Americans, leaving too many Oregonians and Americans in legal limbo.
This is not right, nor fair. I’m committed to continuing our fight for reform, and also to protecting the progress we’ve made at the state level (especially with a new Attorney General at the helm).
We kicked off the year by launching the Cannabis Caucus, a bipartisan forum for members to discuss, learn, and work together to establish a better and more rational approach to federal cannabis policy. This Caucus is the first of its kind, and another sign of progress being made on Capitol Hill. Watch our launch here.
I’ve also introduced with Senator Wyden the most comprehensive marijuana legislation package to date that would bring the federal government in line with the will of the American people. The three bills together would protect state marijuana laws and offer a responsible pathway for the legalization and regulation of marijuana.
It's time for Congress to face the facts surrounding marijuana. A transition of marijuana policy is inevitable, and already well under way. I’m looking for every opportunity to advance our goals of reform.