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Feds nearing a decision on whether pot has medical potential

News Posted Jul 11 2016

Earlier this year after being formally asking by legislators and advocates, the DEA announced they would look into rescheduling marijuana and give notice of their decision in the first half of 2016. Well, here we are nearly halfway through July and the DEA has remained silent. While a decision can be expected soon, people are still curious if the industry will be able to progress further, remain the same, or somehow become worse. The currently progressing state of the marijuana industry and the Obama administration's 'look the other way' policy have convinced some that the DEA will likely lighten marijuana's classification to at least Schedule II. Moving cannabis down to Schedule II allows the government to keep it illegal, but regulate and control the substance similar to adderall, morphine and cocaine, but this leaves current marijuana businesses federally illegal. Others believe the answer is to deschedule cannabis like we have done with alcohol and tobacco, allowing fully legal regulation. Until the DEA announces their plan we are only left to wait and hope.

Suspense is mounting after the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration missed its self-imposed June 30 deadline to decide whether to reschedule the drug and recognize its potential therapeutic value. Twenty-six states already have legalized its medical use.

Even if marijuana gets demoted to Schedule 2, it would still be a highly controlled drug, in the same category as cocaine. And with marijuana still illegal under federal law, a decision to reschedule would leave pot businesses running in the same gray area they do now.

In the long run, many say, the best solution is not to reschedule marijuana but to “deschedule” the drug, putting it in the same category as tobacco and alcohol

Original article: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/white-house/article88528557.html

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