Pot legalization group says to meet White House officials

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 20, 2016 5:11 PM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Activists at a group supporting marijuana legalization said on Wednesday that White House officials have invited them to a meeting next week to talk about issues surrounding the substance.

"I hope to establish an ongoing dialog with the White House and cannabis reformers," said Adam Eidinger, the co-founder of DCMJ, the activist group.

"This meeting is hopefully the beginning of many meetings where the White House will make reforms before this administration's time ends," said Eidinger, who has led efforts to legalize pot in the nation's capital.

The White House had no immediate comment. President Barack Obama's final term ends in January.

DCMJ had written to Obama, his senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, and other White House officials asking for a meeting. Another source at the group said the meeting on Monday would be held with officials from the White House's Office of Public Engagement, but he did not know exactly what marijuana issues they wanted to discuss.

The group wants the federal government to remove marijuana from the so-called list of Schedule One drugs that includes harder substances like heroin and cocaine. Activists say many Americans, especially blacks and Latinos, are needlessly jailed and medical research into cannabis is delayed because of the 1970 Controlled Substances Act that initiated the listing. It was signed into law by former President Richard Nixon.

(Reporting by Timothy Gardner; Editing by Chris Reese)