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Polis, Blumenauer Bills De-Federalize Marijuana Prohibition
Provide for Regulatory and Taxation Framework

Washington, Feb 5 -

Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) and Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) today introduced two pieces of legislation to de-federalize marijuana policy and create a framework for the federal taxation of cannabis. Polis’ Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act would remove the Drug Enforcement Agency’s authority over marijuana and allow states to choose whether to allow marijuana for medicinal or recreational use. Blumenauer’s Marijuana Tax Equity Act would create a federal excise tax on marijuana. Together, these bills would provide a system of regulation and taxation for marijuana in states where it is legal.

“This legislation doesn't force any state to legalize marijuana, but Colorado and the 18 other jurisdictions that have chosen to allow marijuana for medical or recreational use deserve the certainty of knowing that federal agents won’t raid state-legal businesses,” said Polis. “Congress should simply allow states to regulate marijuana as they see fit and stop wasting federal tax dollars on the failed drug war.”

“We are in the process of a dramatic shift in the marijuana policy landscape,” said Blumenauer. “Public attitude, state law, and established practices are all creating irreconcilable difficulties for public officials at every level of government. We want the federal government to be a responsible partner with the rest of the universe of marijuana interests while we address what federal policy should be regarding drug taxation, classification, and legality.”

The Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act follows Colorado’s model of regulating marijuana like alcohol by:

States could choose to continue to prohibit marijuana production or use in their states and it would remain illegal to transport marijuana to a state where it is prohibited.

The Marijuana Tax Equity Act would create the following framework: 

The congressmen have also co-authored a new report “The Path Forward: Rethinking Federal Marijuana Policy.” The document reviews the history of marijuana prohibition in the U.S., current conflicts between state and federal law, and outlines several opportunities to reform and clarify marijuana law at the federal level.