Federal Spending Package Protects Medical Marijuana, Strips Other Provisions

In the FY2020 appropriations package released Monday, existing protections for medical cannabis programs from federal prosecutors that have been in place since 2014 remained, but other amendments that had been added earlier in the year by House Democrats were removed from the final compromise.

Provisions that were removed included a revision of federal employment drug testing policy, a restriction against the Department of Justice from interfering with state-legal adult-use marijuana, and the removal of a rider that blocks the District of Columbia from implementing legalization.

“At a time when a record number of Americans support ending our failed prohibition on marijuana, it is incredibly disappointing to see that Congress continues to ignore the will of their constituents on this important issue. Supporters of legalization are engaged voters and we shouldn’t be treated as a bargaining chip in spending negotiations when justice and liberty are at stake,” said NORML Executive Director Erik Altieri.

To contact your lawmakers in support of pending federal legislation, visit NORML’s Action Center.