Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) is back with another marijuana decriminalization bill, and Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) is a co-sponsor.
House Resolution 5843, titled the Personal Use of Marijuana by Responsible Adults Act of 2008, would express support for "a very small number of individuals" suffering from chronic pain or illness to smoke marijuana with impunity.
If HR 5843 were passed, the House would support marijuana smokers possessing up to 100 grams—about 3½ ounces—of cannabis without being arrested. It would also give its blessing to the "nonprofit transfer" of up to an ounce of marijuana.
I liked Frank's response to critics, too.
In a shot at Republicans, Frank said it was strange that those who support limited government want to criminalize marijuana.
Asked whether the resolution's passage would change his personal behavior, Frank quipped, "I do obey every law I vote for" but quickly said he did not use marijuana, nor does he encourage it.
"I smoke cigars. I don't think other people should do that. If young people ask me, I would advise them not to do it," he said.
Nick Juliano reports on the Office of Drug Control Policy's extremely mature response to Frank: dispatching a bunch of sneering critics to the presser.
Why did the White House feel it necessary to send at least three staffers to Capitol Hill to place in every reporter's hand a copy of its 20-page, color-copied "2008 Marijuana Sourcebook?" RAW STORY posed this question to Murray.
"It is our responsibility to be aware of policy developments," said Murray, who clarified that he had a PhD and was not a medical doctor. He explained that Frank's attempt to modify the controlled substances act was very much of interest to the Bush administration's pot prohibitionists.
The Marijuana Policy Project's Rob Kampia, who stuck around to listen to Murray's post-press conference diatribe, said he suspected ulterior motives behind the propagandistic pontificating.
"Nothing's going to happen on this before he loses his job," the decriminalization advocate said, acknowledging that Frank's bill won't move forward until at least next year, when President Bush—and his appointees—would be out of office. "This is him emptying the clip."
Via Bruce Mirken.