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Ranking Member Walz Responds To Trump Administration Changes In Marijuana Policy

Jan 4, 2018
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Ranking Member Tim Walz (D-MN), released the following statement following news reports that Attorney General Jeff Sessions plans to instruct the Department of Justice (DOJ) to crackdown on states that have legalized recreational and medical cannabis. The news comes at the same time as the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) decision to allow VA doctors to discuss medical cannabis with veteran patients: 

“I am glad to see VA taking this commonsense step in the right direction, however, it is long past due,” said Rep. Walz, the highest ranking enlisted servicemember ever to serve in Congress. “I also find it extremely concerning that VA made their decision shortly before Trump’s DOJ announced a crackdown on states that have legalized recreational and medical cannabis. Trump and Attorney General Sessions’ decision will likely have far reaching and profoundly negative consequences on the lives of veterans who depend on medical cannabis to cope with injuries such as PTSD or chronic pain sustained during service to our country. It is disappointing to see that while the VA moves in the right direction, however slowly, AG Sessions is determined to take our country backwards. What’s more, the AG’s decision risks further facilitating the extremely dangerous and misguided practice of overprescribing opioids, a practice that overwhelming hurts veterans. I am proud to fight alongside the 83% of veterans and caregivers who support legalizing medical cannabis nationally, as well as with the over 90% of veterans who support VA research into medical marijuana.”