A year after the California Supreme Court upheld Proposition 64, marijuana remains a Schedule I drug under federal law, along with heroin and LSD.
The DEA has repeatedly rejected marijuana as a dangerous drug.
But the marijuana industry is hoping the Trump administration’s anti-weed crusade could finally force Congress to change the law.
In a statement on Wednesday, the Marijuana Industry Group said the White House’s recent actions “are the beginning of the end for states’ ability to set their own policies on the sale and cultivation of cannabis.”
“The U.S. Department of Justice’s recent announcement that it will not pursue prosecution of states that allow marijuana for medical use is a victory for the American people, and for states and communities across the country that have sought to set the legal framework for the future,” the group said.
The statement said the Justice Department’s move could help push lawmakers to pass a legalization bill in 2017, with the support of Trump.
In addition to the Justice Dept. announcement, the group announced a series of marijuana legalization initiatives in the past year, including a new state ballot initiative in Alaska, Nevada and Oregon that would legalize recreational use of marijuana for adults.
The group has also been working on the legalization of cannabis for medical purposes.
In April, the nonprofit National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) announced a $100 million investment in an initiative that would allow cannabis users to get prescriptions for a marijuana-based painkiller.
“These efforts to legalize cannabis are a step in the right direction, but will not lead to legalization,” the statement said.
“We are hopeful that a change in the administration’s policy will force Congress, not the courts, to change federal marijuana law.
NORML is working with the White Senate and the White Houses Department of Health and Human Services to help them make that happen.”