Marijuana Rescheduling, the DEA and Our Next President | Canna Law Blog™
Wednesday, Apr 13, 2016

Last week, the Drug Enforcement Administration announced it will consider rescheduling marijuana sometime in 2016. The DEA enforces the federal Controlled Substances Act, which classifies drugs into five different schedules based on the drug’s danger. Marijuana has long been classified as a Schedule I controlled substance, which means the government believes it has a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medical application, and that there is a lack of accepted safety for its use under medical supervision. Other Schedule I drugs include LSD and Heroin. The DEA has the legal authority to reschedule substances and for years marijuana advocates have urged it to move marijuana to a less restrictive Schedule or to remove it from scheduling altogether.

The DEA’s memo comes in response to a 2015 letter from Senator Elizabeth Warren and other Democratic senators, urging the federal government to allow more research into the benefits of medical marijuana. In its response memo, the DEA said it will consider a Food and Drug Administration recommendation on whether it should reschedule marijuana. The DEA did not disclose what the FDA recommended, only that it has received a recommendation.