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Trump now has a Tennessee weed bill with his name on it

Two Tennessee Republicans are trying to ensure their constituents will think of TRUMP when they smoke their medical marijuana.

by Christianna Silva
Jun 28 2018, 10:23pm

Two Tennessee Republicans are trying to ensure their constituents will think of TRUMP when they smoke their medical marijuana, if all goes according to plan.

The Tennessee Responsible Use of Medicinal Plants Act, or the TRUMP Act, was pushed by Republican State Representative Bryan Terry and State Senator Steve Dickerson, the Times Free Press in Tennessee reports. Though duo lost a bid to pass a medical marijuana bill during this year’s General Assembly, they’re hoping the newly-retooled TRUMP Act will expand medical research and effectively legalize cannabis extracts under medical supervision.

“If you believe in freedom, advancing medicine, and providing opportunities for our industries, then you should support Tennesseans having the right to research and the right to try agricultural medicines,” Terry said in a news release obtained by the Times Free Press in Tennessee.

That’s because Terry and Dickerson believe Trump is an advocate for medical marijuana rights. And he has spoken favorably of weed before: Earlier this month, he even said he would back a federal effort to give states the right to legalize marijuana, echoing comments he made during the presidential campaign.

And in 1990, he even said he wanted to legalize marijuana as a way to put an end to the war on drugs.

“I think it certainly has to be a state — I have not smoked it — it’s got to be a state decision,” Trump said. “I do like it, you know, from a medical standpoint…it does do pretty good things. But from the other standpoint, I think that it should be up to the states.”

But just because Trump has made vague comments supporting states rights to legalize marijuana, doesn’t mean his policies reflect them. Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, opposes legalizing marijuana in all forms and has taken steps to make it more difficult to legally obtain the drug.

In January, Sessions rescinded an Obama-era guidance that allowed states to legalize marijuana without much federal interference and would allow federal prosecutors to crack down on marijuana businesses in states where pot is legal.

“It is the mission of the Department of Justice to enforce the laws of the United States, and the previous issuance of guidance undermines the rule of law and the ability of our local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement partners to carry out this mission,” Sessions said in the new guidance in January. “Therefore, today's memo on federal marijuana enforcement simply directs all U.S. Attorneys to use previously established prosecutorial principles that provide them all the necessary tools to disrupt criminal organizations, tackle the growing drug crisis, and thwart violent crime across our country.”

Cover image: A passerby photographs a mural showing U.S. President-elect Donald Trump (R) blowing marijuana smoke into the mouth of Russian President Vladimir Putin on the wall of a BBQ restaurant on November 23, 2016 in Vilnius, Lithuania. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images.