Oregon Senator Ron Wyden, who has really stepped up his efforts to push for cannabis reform lately after opposing cannabis reform in the past, is putting the pressure on United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions to release task force recommendations dealing with, among other things, marijuana policy. Below is a press release Senator Wyden put out yesterday about it:
U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today called on U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to release recommendations on marijuana, violent crime and immigration policies from the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety.
In a statement last week, Sessions said he is already making changes to Justice Department policies based on recommendations provided by the task force. In a letter to Sessions today, Wyden said Americans have a right to know the basis behind policy changes that affect their daily lives.
“It is concerning to see this administration failing, once again, to be transparent and straightforward with the American people about the motivations behind its policy shifts,” Wyden said.
“I write to you today to ask that the recommendations of the Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety immediately be made public.”
An executive order issued February 9 directed Sessions to create a task force to examine ways “to reduce crime, including, in particular, illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and violent crime.”
In an April memo, Sessions said he had established task force subcommittees to make recommendations on “illegal immigration and violent crime, such as gun crime, drug trafficking, and gang violence,” as well as review “charging, sentencing, and marijuana” policies.
Wyden noted the wide-ranging implications the task force recommendations could have on legal marijuana consumers and businesses in states like Oregon, where voters have chosen to legalize marijuana. More than 20 percent of Americans live in states that permit adult use of marijuana, and almost 90 percent of states have some form of legal marijuana.
“The citizens of Oregon voted to legalize medical and recreational marijuana, and it is not the role of the Attorney General to unilaterally undermine the will of Oregon voters on the basis of uncorroborated claims and furtive recommendations made by a task force shielded from public input and scrutiny,” Wyden said.
Read today’s letter here.