Peace for Patients: What's the Cost?
| Hunter Holliman
The federal war on medical cannabis has been a costly one, claiming both financial resources and the freedom of countless advocates. In ASA's newest report "What is the Cost", our research found that over the last decade nearly $500 million had been spent by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on raids, federal prosecutions, incarceration, and asset forfeiture suits. Even more surprising, $300 million of this was spent during Obama's short time in office where the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) spent up to 4% of their budget annually on medical cannabis enforcement in states that had already made it legal.
There are currently over 1 million legal medical cannabis users in 20 states plus the District of Columbia, and over 39% of the country's population lives in a state where it is legal. Additionally, recent polls have shown that 85% of Americans nationwide support the legalization of medical cannabis. In light of these figures, it seems ridiculous that the federal government would continue wasting taxpayer's money to fight a war on medical cannabis that no one supports.
Without Congressional intervention, however, the amount of funds spent on undermining state laws will only increase. This summer, the Senate will be reveiwing and approving the DOJ's budget for the coming year giving us a chance to end the federal war on medical cannabis. As the Senate Appropriations Committee reviews the DOJ's budget for next year, encourage them to support the cutting of all spending on medical cannabis enforcement, effectively putting an end to the federal war on medical cannabis!
This email will demand that your Senators support the CJS budget amendment to cut spending on medical cannabis enforcement as well as request a constituent meeting with their local offices so you can explain your position in person (with the help of our report).