CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Larkin on Federal Marijuana Policy

Paul J. Larkin (The Heritage Foundation) has posted The Proper Way to Reconsider Federal Marijuana Policy (Issue Brief, No. 4806, January 8, 2018) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
We should not expect federal law enforcement officers to decide what laws to support based on polls. We should demand that Members of Congress make those decisions, however much they may want that cup to pass from their lips. The public can urge Congress to repeal or revise whatever federal laws they do not like. That may lead to unwise decisions, but at least asking Congress to reexamine the Controlled Substances Act is the sensible way to address the matter. Congress can ask the Trump Administration—and ask its predecessors too—what is the best criminal justice and social policy. Congress can also query the Food and Drug Administration about what is the best medical answer to this debate. After all, we do not allow state legislators or voters to decide what pharmaceuticals can be marketed. For 80 years, we have vested the authority to make that decision in the FDA because we do not believe that medical safety and effectiveness should be the subjects of plebiscites.

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