Monday, May 5, 2008

House Judiciary Chair Questions DEA Tactics

Rep. Conyers Next Step Toward Congressional Hearings

Dear ASA Supporter,

ASA’s ongoing campaign to hold the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) accountable for its continued efforts to undermine state medical marijuana laws is working. We are pleased to announce that US House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) has sent a letter to DEA Acting Administrator Michele Leonhart challenging the DEA's actions.

ASA staff together with grassroots activists helped make it possible for Chairman Conyers to issue this letter. Please donate now to support our important work in Washington, D.C.!

As a follow-up to a public statement he made in December, Chairman Conyers’ letter questions DEA directly about its heightened raid activity across California and its intimidation of property owners owners with threats of prosecution and asset forfeiture because they rent to medical cannabis dispensaries. Chairman Conyers is the highest ranking elected official to question the DEA’s tactics since medical cannabis raids in California escalated dramatically in 2007. This letter is an important and necessary step towards Congressional hearings by the House Judiciary Committee, which oversees the actions of the DEA.

Over the past several months, ASA and advocates all over the country have lobbied Chairman Conyers to convene hearings. Dozens of legal, tax-paying dispensaries have been shut down or evicted by their landlords, and many more face the same fate if Congress does not intervene. ASA Director of Government Affairs Caren Woodson has been lobbying the offices of Chairman Conyers and Subcommittee Chairman Scott about this issue for months, and her persistence is paying off!

Caren’s work with the House Judiciary Committee was bolstered by a statewide effort to get California’s elected officials to call for an end to the harmful tactics of the DEA. ASA and its allies were successful in garnering strong letters of support from several elected officials, urging Chairman Conyers to hold hearings. Among those who spoke up were Orange County Supervisor Chris Norby, Los Angeles City Councilmember Dennis Zine, and the mayors of Berkeley, Oakland, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and West Hollywood.

I urge you to make a special commitment to support the kind of persistent, strategic, and effective organizing that ASA demonstrated in moving Chairman Conyers forward on this issue by making a monthly pledge of support or a one time contribution to ASA.

Please visit and make a contribution today!

Steph Sherer
Executive Director
Americans for Safe Access

P.S. Please visit to read the letter from Chairman Conyers.

Americans for Safe Access is the nation's largest organization of patients, medical professionals, scientists and concerned citizens promoting safe and legal access to cannabis for therapeutic use and research.

1 comment:

Hempman said...

It would be wonderful if this would work. I predict that, just like the petition to Health and Human Services using the Truth in Data Act, this too will fail. Too many cops of all color (DEA, FBI, state, county, etc.) all have too much vested interest in keeping any law that allows them to criinalize anyone they see fit for whatever reason, no matter how irrational. Politicians are afriad of the cops, not their consitutents. Sorry, people, this will go nowhere.