It was once believed that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions was the greatest foe of the cannabis legalization movement. But aside from getting under everyone’s skin and sandbagging medical marijuana research opportunities, he hasn’t done much to stifle the average cannabis industry.
But there is a man on Capitol Hill, bearing the same last name as the head of the Justice Department, who we are learning is the great saboteur when it comes to making progress with pot in the lower chamber of Congress.
That man is U.S. Representative Pete Sessions of Texas. This twisted hombre, who is the Chairman of the House Rules Committee, has gone out of his way throughout the years to ensure no amendments associated with protecting state-level marijuana laws makes it out alive. Over the summer, he blocked several amendments designed to give veterans access to medical marijuana. It is a run of interference that has three times prevented the House of Representative from so much as taking up a vote on the issue. It hasn’t since 2016.
But Sessions doesn’t just block votes; he professes his hatred for marijuana to the public every chance he gets. At a recent conference to discuss the national opioid epidemic, Sessions told those in attendance that pot isn’t a suitable alternative for painkillers because it is “300 times more powerful” than it was 45 years ago, reports the Daily Beast. This reactionary figure has also suggested that weed is more of a cause than a cure. At the conference, he claimed that marijuana was a gateway to opioid addiction, despite scientific studies and the federal government’s health agencies showing otherwise.
It was the National Institute on Drug Abuse that came out and said that “the majority of people who use marijuana do not go on to use other, ‘harder’ substances,” but rather it is “alcohol and nicotine” that “were more likely to inspire people to use harder substances.” Still, Sessions has conveniently disregarded this information.
It is encouraging, however, that Pete Sessions’ reign of stupidity might be at the end of its rope. The Congressman is up for reelection for the first time in over a decade and stands a distinct possibility of being knocked off his cross by Democratic opponent Colin Allred. This candidate, who served as a civil rights attorney and played with the NFL, is a cannabis supporter. He believes veterans should have access to medical marijuana as a means for treating PTSD and chronic pain.
But the political race has been neck and neck. A recent New York Times/Siena College Poll published earlier this week shows Sessions leading 48 percent to Allred’s 47 percent. Still, if the election goes a certain way, one Sessions is on his way home.
Now, if we could just a find a way to get the other one out of Washington, we’d be in good shape.