Votes Signal Growing Support In Congress For Legalized Marijuana Protections

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:  Congress‘ openness toward marijuana use continues to grow, with the House voting Wednesday to prevent the Justice Department from meddling in states that allow medicinal use of the drug and signaling growing support for even broader protections of legalized pot. The chamber voted to lay off medical marijuana, 242-186, for the second year in Read the full article…

Two California Lawmakers Challenge Justice Department On Medical Marijuana

CALIFORNIA:  Two members of Congress from California who were authors of an amendment blocking the Justice Department from interfering with state medical marijuana laws are disputing Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr.’s narrow interpretation of the provision. The Justice Department said last week that the bipartisan legislation to protect legal medical marijuana laws did not restrict Read the full article…

New Law Could Affect Criminal Sentences In Marijuana Cases

CALIFORNIA:  In a sharp reversal of federal drug policy, Congress has prohibited the Justice Department from interfering with laws in California and other states that allow the medical use of marijuana. And the turnabout caught the immediate attention of federal judges, who want to know its impact on some recent criminal convictions under the federal law that Read the full article…

Obama’s Nominee For A Top DOJ Slot Has Said States Should Legalize Marijuana

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:  The Post’s Sari Horwitz reports that Obama intends to nominate Vanita Gupta, currently director of the ACLU’s Center for Justice, to lead the civil rights division of the Justice Department. Gupta also currently leads the ACLU’s National Campaign to End Mass Incarceration. Horwitz writes: Gupta, 39, who was born in the Philadelphia area to immigrant Read the full article…

Justice Department To Clarify Bank – Marijuana Company Transaction Rules

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: The Justice Department is drafting legal guidance to help clarify how the banking industry can do business with newly legal marijuana businesses in states such as Colorado, according to people familiar with the matter. The planned legal memo won’t draw clear lines about what banks can and can’t do, but will instead emphasize Read the full article…

The News Tribune Opinion: From Justice, a serious approach to legal pot

WASHINGTON: After taking its own sweet time — almost 10 months — to respond to initiatives that legalized marijuana in Washington and Colorado, the Obama administration finally got it right.

With Holder In The Lead, Sentencing Reform Gains Momentum

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Sit down with the attorney general to ask him about his priorities, as NPR did earlier this year, and he’ll talk about voting rights and national security. But if you listen a bit longer, Eric Holder gets to this: “I think there are too many people in jail for too long and for not Read the full article…