Last month we told you about the San Francisco Democratic Party calling for an end to the federal medical marijuana crackdown in California, and now one of the state’s most powerful Democrat politicians is condemning the attacks against MMJ in her state.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has come out publicly against the crackdown that is decimating the medical marijuana industry in California. Americans For Safe Access recently sent out a press release about Leader Pelosi’s announcement, and it reads in part:

San Francisco, CA — U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) issued a statement yesterday condemning the escalated attacks on state-compliant medical marijuana businesses in her state. Responding to recent federal government actions threatening safe access to medical marijuana, Pelosi said she has “long supported” and will “continue to strongly support” efforts to “advocate federal policies that recognize the scientific evidence and clinical research demonstrating the medical benefits of medicinal marijuana, that respects the wishes of the states in providing relief to ill individuals, and that prevents the federal government from acting to harm the safe access of medicinal marijuana provided under state law.”

As a result of threats by U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag to bring criminal and civil charges against San Francisco dispensary operators and their landlords, five city facilities have been forced to close, and at least four additional dispensaries have received similar threatening letters. Pelosi’s statement comes on the same day the Alameda County Democratic Party unanimously adopted a resolution “decrying the federal raids on dispensaries and calling for the U.S. Department of Justice to refrain from future expenditure of public resources on any act that contradicts the will of the California voters regarding medical marijuana.”

Last week the San Francisco Democratic Party passed a similar resolution, calling on President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, and U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag “cease all Federal actions in San Francisco immediately, respect State and local laws, and stop the closure of City-permitted medical cannabis facilities.” This resolution followed a statement earlier in April by San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, opposing “recent federal actions targeting duly permitted Medicinal Cannabis Dispensaries…that aim to limit our citizens’ ability to have safe access to the medicine they need.”

The group behind the recent momentum of opposition by local, state and federal elected officials is the coalition “San Francisco United for Safe Access,” made up of patients, patient advocates like Americans for Safe Access (ASA) and its local ASA-SF chapter, as well as other stakeholders seeking to maintain a safe and legal means by which qualified patients can obtain their medication. “We applaud Pelosi’s leadership in urging President Obama to address medical marijuana as a public health issue,” said ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer. “Rather than defending a policy of intolerance, President Obama should end his unnecessary and harmful attacks once and for all.”

Of course, a change in Obama’s change in policy doesn’t seem to be forthcoming anytime soon. In fact, his stubbornness on the issue seems directly proportional to the futility of his policy when it comes to getting votes for his reelection.

It will be interesting to see just how much pressure President Obama can stand from his own party on the issue of medical marijuana.

– Joe Klare

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