Does Jeff Sessions Have an “Obsession” With Marijuana?

Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says his successor Jeff Sessions’ preoccupation with marijuana has become a near “obsession.” Holder’s remarks came amid reports that Sessions is pressuring Congress to abandon the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, a brief but highly impactful rider to the 2014 omnibus spending bill that prohibits the use of federal funds to interfere with states that have legalized medical pot.

“This would give the attorney general a blank check to go after medical marijuana,” said Sarah Trumble, deputy director of social policy and politics at Third Way. “Without it, he might try, but it would be really hard for him.”

But whether we’re talking medical or recreational, state-sanctioned or illegal weed, Sessions views all cannabis virtually the same: as a pernicious evil that must be stamped out with federal help. That view, which completely contradicts previous Justice Department recommendations, has put the agency in a “strange place,”  Holder said.

A full Sessions-led crackdown on states that have legalized medical or recreational weed has been feared since Sessions’ first day on the job, but has yet to materialize. Eight states and the District of Columbia have now passed laws allowing for recreational use. Some form of pot is now legally available in 29 states.


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