Medical marijuana is legal in 23 states and the nation’s capitol of Washington, DC. While this is considered progress in the fight to end the prohibition of marijuana, there are still federal guidelines that prevent doctors from prescribing cannabis to patients and limits access to marijuana for those who need it in the places in this country where it is legal. A trio of senators have come forth with a bill that would reduce these federal guidelines and make the laws concerning weed and its distribution more clear..
The bill was introduced by a bipartisan team comprised of Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky along with Democrats Sen. Kristen Gillibrand of New York and Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey. California Democrat, Sen. Barabara Boxer recently joined them (her senior aide was arrested for marijuana possession). There has never been a bill of this kind set before the Senate.
The bill proposes a reclassification of marijuana for the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), a rethinking of interstate transport of certain kinds of medicines, access expansion for research and allowing banks to get involved in the medical marijuana industry.
The Marijuana Policy Project along with Americans for Safe Access and the Drug Policy Alliance joined together as a consultation body for the drafting of the bill. The intended name for the bill when it becomes a law is The Compassionate Access, Research, Expansion and Respect States (CARERS). This measure has been met with rousing approval from those who advocate for the legalization of marijuana.