Members of Nevada’s Congressional Delegation reacted Thursday strongly to the memo from U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions regarding marijuana prosecution. Democratic Congresswomen Jacky Rosen and Dina Titus criticized the move by sessions, which could pave the way to prosecute people using marijuana that’s legal under Nevada state law.
It’s fair to say the move caught people by surprise. When Sessions was in the Senate, he said things like, “good people don’t smoke marijuana.” After he was sworn in as Attorney General, Sessions told a congressional panel that the Obama-era rule that pretty much-left people in legal-marijuana states alone remained in effect.
However, everything changed Thursday, and Nevada members of Congress were not happy about it.
“I am deeply disappointed,” said Congreswoman Jacky Rosen, D-NV. “We knew who he was when Dean Heller voted to approve him as Attorney general. These are no secrets. And it is deeply disrespectful to the rights of Nevada voters, who voted to make it legal in our state, and the voters of other states. This is a state’s rights issue. I’m going to fight for that because our voters need to be respected.”
That was a common theme in Nevada’s reaction.
Senator Dean Heller said, “knowing Attorney General Sessions’ deference to states’ rights, I strongly encourage DOJ to meet with Governor Sandoval and [Nevada] Attorney General Laxalt to discuss the implications of changes to federal marijuana policy.”
Democratic Congressman Ruben Kihuen was even stronger, saying sessions was reversing years of respect for state rights, while Congresswoman Dina Titus said the trump administration is at odds with the public.
“We knew sessions was tough on drugs and he seems to equate marijuana with heroin, and so it’s really not that surprising,” Titus said. But if you do public opinion polls across the country, the majority of people are in favor of legalizing marijuana.”
Titus was asked if there was any chance of Congress removing marijuana from the list of controlled substances, and she said Thursday’s news might motivate people to complain to their members of Congress, which could bring about some pressure to change the law.