Congressional Research Service highlights cannabis rescheduling/descheduling.
The CRS report, called The Controlled Substances Act (CSA): A Legal Overview for the 118th Congress, is an annual report that was updated late last week. As the years go on, there’s much more to consider when it comes to cannabis.
“Another topic that raised a number of legal considerations for the 117th Congress is the
increasing divergence between federal and state marijuana regulation,” the report noted, detailing how many states had passed medical and adult use laws, while federal law remains unchanged.
The report detailed how the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act
(MORE Act) differs from the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act. It also detailed the implications of removing cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act, which “could raise several legal considerations.” For example, such an action likely wouldn’t apply retroactively, so legislation would need to address past convictions. Removal also doesn’t affect other existing laws and regulations that relate to cannabis, and “thus would not bring aspects of the existing cannabis industry into compliance with federal laws such as the FD&C Act.”
Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is conducting a review of how cannabis is scheduled, as prompted by Pres. Joe Biden.
Global treaties are also a consideration, as, “reducing or removing federal restrictions on marijuana might be inconsistent with certain treaty obligations of the United States.”
Mexico to revisit cannabis legalization.
Senate president Alejandro Armenta announced in a news conference that when the legislative session returns on February 1, cannabis will be on the agenda.
The debate will include adult use, medical use, and industrial hemp, Armenta said, calling hemp an “enormous opportunity” for Mexico, especially with regard to paper and textiles.
Armenta noted that the courts have already decided on the issue of adult use.
For context, in June 2021, the Supreme Court declared that cannabis prohibition for personal use was unconstitutional and urged Congress to pass legislation to regulate it. That has not yet happened.
+ More: Read Cannabis Wire’s coverage of Mexico’s judicial and legislative ping pong approach to cannabis law reform.
Democrats pick up the legalization push again.
On Friday, Rep. Ed Osienski introduced two legalization bills, House Bill 1 and House Bill 2, which would legalize possession of up to an ounce of cannabis by adults 21 and older, and also create the foundation for regulation of sales.
Committee hearings are schedule for this week.
It’s not the first time Delaware lawmakers have tried to legalize. House lawmakers were unsuccessful in June in their attempt to override Democratic Gov. John Carney’s veto of a simple-legalization-sans-regulation bill.
The election brought the potential for even more support in the legislature for legalization, but Carney hasn’t signaled any kind of overt change in support.
So, in other words, expect some turbulence.