Thursday, May 9, 2013

Reefer Reference: CRS on the Legalization of Recreational Marijuana

The Congressional Research Service analyzes the Washington and Oregon state laws legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in relation to the federal Controlled Substances Act.

State Legalization of Recreational Marijuana: Selected Legal Issues (April 5, 2013).
This report summarizes the Washington and Colorado marijuana legalization laws and evaluates whether, or the extent to which, they may be preempted by the CSA or by international agreements. It also highlights potential responses to these recent legalization initiatives by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and identifies other noncriminal consequences that marijuana users may face under federal law. Finally, the report closes with a description of legislative proposals introduced in the 113th Congress relating to the treatment of marijuana under federal law . . . .
Washington's Initiative 502 and Colorado's Amendment 64 have sparked interest and controversy. The CRS report is a non-partisan consideration of the legal issues.

For more information about the Congressional Research Service, see the Gallagher guide on Congressional Research Service Reports.

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