“..absolutely criminal…”

The DEA, foot-dragging and the Justice Department…

[Note: As we’ve shared multiple times lately, the local DEA task force has lent its support to Drug Safety Utah – the group created by the UMA and others specifically to defeat the Utah Medical Cannabis Initiative – and likely in defiance of federal law. But as we’ve increasingly observed in recent weeks, such niceties as law following don’t seem to matter much when it comes to DSU’s behavior.]

“As scientists try to research the medical benefits of marijuana, a simple problem has emerged: How do you research marijuana if no one can produce it under federal law?

Despite a solution proposed in mid-2016, which allowed the Drug Enforcement Administration to approve marijuana manufacturers, only the University of Mississippi has been approved, despite dozens of applications. And there’s no sign the DEA intends to approve others anytime soon.

Advocates seem to blame one person for the delays: Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Ian Prior, spokesman for the Justice Department, declined to comment on the issue.

‘The holdup is the Department of Justice,’ said Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla.

Congress is trying to take action to get the process moving.

A House committee recently approved a bipartisan bill authored by Rep. Luis Correa, D-Calif. It pushes the Department of Veterans Affairs to research marijuana’s ability to treat post-traumatic stress disorder and other chronic pain.

Correa found many veterans already use marijuana as an alternative to highly addictive opioids.

Correa said the VA is already authorized to research cannabis under federal law, but when he asked the agency about its policies, officials said it had that authority.

‘Cannabis is good for treating epilepsy, seizures – it is well-documented, we know it works. The question is what else does it work for?’ Correa said.

‘For us to stick our heads in a hole in the ground, and not research the medical aspects of this – it’s criminal,’ he said. ‘Absolutely criminal’.”

#MMJ #UTpol #USpol #VA #DoJ #DEA #TRUCE    

See full article – Researching medical marijuana for veterans faces more White House hurdles