The Bush Administration Struck a Parting Shot to Legitimate Science

The Bush administration struck a parting shot to legitimate science on January 14th, as the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) refused to end the government monopoly over the supply of marijuana available for Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-sanctioned research. DEA’s final ruling rejected the nearly 2-year-old recommendation of DEA Administrative Law Judge Mary Ellen Bittner. The prior recommendation on February 12, 2007, stated that it would be in the public interest to end the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) monopoly on the supply of marijuana for legitimate scientific research. The DEAs contradictory ruling continues its policy since 1970 of forcing the controversy over the medical use of marijuana to be resolved through political struggles rather than scientific research. NIDA’s monopoly fundamentally obstructs MAPS research aimed at developing smoked or vaporized marijuana into a prescription medicine.