Delia A. Deschaine, Member of the Firm in the Health Care & Life Sciences practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was quoted in The National Law Journal, in “The Road Ahead: What to Expect from the Biden Administration on the Regulatory Front,” by C. Ryan Barber, Cheryl Miller, and Melanie Waddell. (Read the full version - subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

During the campaign, Biden publicly supported decriminalizing cannabis, though he has not offered full-throated support for federal legalization. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris was the lead sponsor of the MORE Act, which would remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and shift regulatory power to the states. …

“The FDA’s future policy on CBD regulation is harder to predict, although it may be reasonable to expect the status quo to remain while the agency continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Epstein Becker Green partner Delia Deschaine.

The DEA also has been sued for its continuing listing of marijuana as a highly restricted Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act.

“The fact that Biden has picked Xavier Becerra to serve as the next secretary of Health and Human Services could serve as a bellwether for marijuana down-scheduling, although likely not complete removal from the CSA, by DEA, in 2021,” said Deschaine. “In considering any potential scheduling action, DEA must request a scientific and medical evaluation from HHS. In the past, HHS has uniformly recommended that marijuana remain in Schedule I. However, Becerra has a pro-cannabis track record. Therefore, we could see a change in HHS’s policy in 2021.”

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