Sessions Voids Cole Memo, the Sky Isn’t Falling

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has long loathed the intention and effect of “the Cole memo.” An Obama-era policy established in 2013, the Cole memo has afforded critical protection from federal prosecution for the state-sanctioned consumption, cultivation, and sale of cannabis — safeguarding those legal participants in reformed states from an overzealous federal prosecution.

Repealed and replaced Thursday by Sessions, the policy change effectively modifies our federal government’s hands-off policy adopted under the Obama administration.

As California, Massachusetts, Maine, and Nevada legalized recreational marijuana on the same day Donald J. Trump was elected president, it was an ominous harbinger of things to come for the marijuana industry.

But with a new Department of Justice (DOJ) policy in place, the question remains, what will the Sessions memo actually mean for those states that have reformed their marijuana laws?

Underfunded and understaffed, many view the return to elevated federal enforcement against…

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