The Trump Administration Might Be Revving Up For Another Anti-Pot Push

A new report from Buzzfeed says a White House committee is looking to "message the facts about negative impacts" of marijuana use.
Posted at 5:08 PM, Aug 30, 2018

Legal marijuana might be back in the crosshairs of the Trump administration. A new report from Buzzfeed claims the White House is working on a campaign to highlight the negative aspects of marijuana use.

The report describes memos from the Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee, a White House group which views the marijuana debate as "partial, one-sided, and inaccurate." Buzzfeed says the committee has polled federal agencies for any data that casts pot use in a bad light.

It's the latest move by the Trump administration to clamp down on marijuana. But past White House efforts have run afoul of politicians — including President Trump himself.

"I'm not sure we're going to be a better, healthier nation if we have marijuana being sold at every corner grocery store." 

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been a consistent voice against marijuana legalization. Back in January, he tried to roll back policies that kept federal prosecutors from interfering with state-approved weed businesses.

The pot business is still illegal nationally, but 30 states and Washington D.C. have authorized marijuana for medical or recreational use. Past administrations took a hands-off approach to drug enforcement in those cases; Sessions wanted to change that.

But Sessions' plans met strong opposition in Congress: Republican Senator Cory Gardner blocked all Department of Justice nominees from advancing through Congress until Trump promised not to target his state's thriving weed industry.

Gardner is now championing a bipartisan bill with Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren to give states more authority over marijuana enforcement. That bill has even earned a bit of tentative approval from Trump himself.

Trump said, "I know exactly what he's doing, we're looking at it. But I probably will end up supporting it."

The new White House pot committee might push Trump to change his mind on that: Buzzfeed says the committee planned to use the negative information it received in a briefing to Trump.