A pair of U.S. governors appealed to the Drug Enforcement Administration on Wednesday to reclassify marijuana as a drug with accepted medical uses, saying current federal law makes it difficult for states that have legalized medical marijuana to safely regulate it.
The petition filed by Gov. Christine Gregoire of Washington and Gov. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island asks the government to change marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II under the Controlled Substances Act. Schedule I drugs are those determined to have no accepted medical use in the United States. Schedule II drugs are those that have some accepted use and can be prescribed, administered or dispensed with controls, according to Gregoire’s office.
Sixteen states and the District of Columbia currently allow the use of marijuana for medical purposes; 10 more states are considering doing the same.