NORML Releases Open Letter to Mike Pence
Washington, DC – National NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws), Michigan NORML and dozens of other state and local chapters have released an open letter to Vice President-Elect Pence seeking clarity and common sense from the incoming administration regarding marijuana policy. During the campaign, President-Elect Trump, on multiple occasions, has voiced support for allowing states to move forward with medical and recreational marijuana laws if they chose to do so. Yet his nomination of Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to be the next Attorney General, who infamously stated that “good people don’t use marijuana” during a Senate hearing in 2016, the administration is currently sending mixed messages in regards to the future of marijuana law reform under the incoming administration.
In keeping with President-Elect Trump’s message of economic growth, the marijuana advocacy groups wrote: “Voters are less and less convinced that cannabis is a criminal problem and no longer want their hard earned tax dollars used to arrest and prosecute non-violent users or entrepreneurs and employees of state licensed cannabis businesses.”
The letter, co-signed by over 50 NORML chapters throughout the country as well as the national organization, represents tens-of-thousands of advocates for cannabis reform.
“As a Michigan resident, I know that Mr. Trump would not have won my state had he campaigned on the continued criminalization of responsible marijuana users,” said Brad Forrester, Communications Director of Michigan NORML, “as the transition Chairman and soon to be Vice President, Mr. Pence has an enormous responsibility to his voters and the American people to support federal policy that respects adults to make their own decisions.”
National NORML recently released a petition to President-Elect Trump with a similar request for marijuana clarity with the letter reading “On behalf of the millions of loyal Americans who use marijuana, we hope he will respect the right of states to determine their own marijuana policy, as you advocated in your campaign. Can you clarify whether you will support states’ rights and allow states that chose to reform their laws to do so or will you use the force of the federal government to interfere with or shut down these programs?”
“The three biggest winners on election night were Donald Trump, Mike Pence, and marijuana,” said Justin Strekal, Political Director for national NORML. “Given the broad support for marijuana reform across essentially all demographics, the Trump-Pence administration would be wise to allow states to continue to set their own marijuana policies without fear of federal intervention. This is not just good policy, it’s good politics.”
Open Letter to Mike Pence
Trump Transition Team
Chairman Mike Pence
1717 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington D.C, United States
December 20, 2016
Vice President-Elect Mike Pence,
American drug policy is at an important crossroads and the incoming Trump/Pence Administration will inherit an unprecedented schism between state and federal law in regards to the regulation and enforcement of marijuana statutes.
Where will the new administration take cannabis policy? President-Elect Trump has said he supports medicinal cannabis and states’ rights to set their own policies without interference by the federal government while on the campaign trail. Now that you both are about to assume office, we ask for clarity regarding the new administration’s plans.
Currently, twenty-one states have legalized cannabis for medicinal use with a combined population of over 123 million people, fifteen states have enacted CBD cannabis oil laws with a combined population of over 97 million people, and eight states plus the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis for adult use with a combined population of over 67 million people.
Only six states still reflect the federal prohibition of marijuana, composing just 11% of the U.S. population.
However, recent cabinet appointments have sent shockwaves through patient communities, emerging industries, and responsible private citizens as many of the recent nominations that have been selected are historic opponents to marijuana law reform. In order to maintain economic stability in a rapidly growing market, the country would benefit from the Trump/Pence Administration