Republican Senator Orrin Hatch on Wednesday will re-introduce the Marijuana Effective Drug Study (MEDS) Act of 2017 in the Senate. The bill, which has bipartisan sponsors, is similar to legislation Hatch introduced last year.
It contains a package of measures intended to make research into medical applications of the drug easier, including increasing the supply of marijuana available to researchers and cutting some red tape out of the currently onerous approval process researchers must go through to work with weed. Researchers have long complained that strict federal regulations on marijuana have made it all-but-impossible to do medical research on the drug.
Contents aside, Hatch's press release is drawing even more attention on account of the groan-inducing marijuana puns sprinkled throughout -- no fewer than eight of them, by my count. In a service to Washington Post readers who are not as hip to drug slang as an 83-year-old Senator from Utah, I'll be annotating Hatch's remarks below.
It’s high time to address research into medical marijuana. Our country has experimented with a variety of state solutions without properly delving into the weeds on the effectiveness, safety, dosing, administration, and quality of medical marijuana. All the while, the federal government strains to enforce regulations that sometimes do more harm than good. To be blunt, we need to remove the administrative barriers preventing legitimate research into medical marijuana, which is why I’ve decided to roll out the MEDS Act.”
I urge my colleagues to join Senator Schatz and me in our joint effort to help thousands of Americans suffering from a wide-range of diseases and disorders. In a Washington at war with itself, I have high hopes that this bipartisan initiative can be a kumbaya moment for both parties.