Medical marijuana has been legalized in about half of the states in the U.S., recreational marijuana use is legal in four states (and Washington D.C.) and more states will likely be legalizing it in 2016, and pro-marijuana laws have actually polled better in three swing states than any of the 2016 presidential candidates.
But House Republicans still won’t shift alongside with public opinion. And they did so again last week when a bipartisan marijuana proposal was killed by Republicans in the House that would have reclassified marijuana thus allowing more laboratories to conduct “credible research on its safety and efficacy as a medical treatment.”
The amendment would have encouraged the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to collaborate and allow studies of the benefits and risks of marijuana to treat medical conditions such as cancer, epilepsy, glaucoma, PTSD, and others.
National Republicans seem uncertain on how to address shifting public attitudes about medical and recreational marijuana use. Republicans have supported steps to allow state medical marijuana programs, but they generally have not supported national marijuana policy changes.