Congress May Nix Provision That Prohibits Feds From Prosecuting Medical Marijuana Users, Sellers

The 85 words almost seemed an afterthought when Congress hurriedly crammed them into a massive budget bill late in the Obama administration, as if lawmakers wanted to acknowledge America’s outlook on marijuana had changed, but not make a big deal of it.

Percilla, left, and Chris, who are part of a live/work exchange program, carry marijuana plants into a greenhouse in Mendocino County, California, on April 19, 2017. (Credit: Josh Edelson / AFP / Getty Images)

Percilla, left, and Chris, who are part of a live/work exchange program, carry marijuana plants into a greenhouse in Mendocino County, California, on April 19, 2017. (Credit: Josh Edelson / AFP / Getty Images)

Almost three years later, a multibillion-dollar industry and the freedom of millions to openly partake in its products without fear of federal prosecution hinge on that obscure budget clause.

But now, Congress may throw it overboard amid pressure from an attorney general who views marijuana as a dangerous menace.

What has become known as the RohrabacherFarr amendment constitutes a single paragraph of federal law. It prohibits the Justice Department from spending even a cent to prosecute medical marijuana users and sellers operating legally under state laws. Since its passage, it has largely shut down efforts by federal prosecutors or drug enforcement officials to interfere with otherwise legal sales of marijuana in 29 states and the District of Columbia that have passed legalization measures.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.