Medical MarijuanaJag from MAPS writes:

“It is with great pleasure that I announce DEA Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Mary Ellen Bittner’s favorable recommendation that the government end its sixty-five year monopoly on the supply of marijuana that can legally be used in FDA-approved medical marijuana research. In her 87-page ruling, Judge Bittner concluded that it is in the public interest for the DEA to issue a Schedule I license to Professor Lyle Craker for his proposed MAPS-sponsored marijuana production facility.

Breaking NIDA’s monopoly by establishing an independent high-quality supply of research-grade marijuana is the final necessary prerequisite to resolving the controversy over medical marijuana through rigorous scientific research. The other necessary prerequisite, which has already been achieved, was the acceptance by the FDA of the use of marijuana vaporization as well as marijuana smoking in clinical research, so that we’re technologically capable of overcoming the expected opposition to smoked marijuana.

DEA lawyers have 20 days to file their objections to the recommendation, although they may be able to file an extension. Prof. Craker’s lawyers will have a similar amount of time to respond. Then the ALJ’s recommendation, and the comments from lawyers for DEA and Prof. Craker, get forwarded to DEA for a final ruling either accepting or rejecting the recommendation.

MAPS, in association with a coalition of medical marijuana patients and researchers, drug policy reform groups, and scientific and health organizations, will soon initiate another major campaign to generate pressure from Congress to compel DEA to accept the recommendation. Thirty-eight members of the US House of Representatives and Massachusetts senators Kerry and Kennedy have already written to DEA urging it to approve Prof. Craker’s license application. The assistance of MAPS members in helping to contact your elected representatives could prove to be crucial in persuading DEA to stop obstructing privately-funded medical marijuana research.”

Read MAPS’ Press Release.
Read Judge Bittner’s 87-page “Opinion and Recommended Ruling”.
If you don’t have time to read the full 87 pages, here’s Judge Bittner’s seven-page concluding statement.