Jan 15, 2019 The new Trump Attorney General nominee said he thinks rescinding the Cole Memo was the wrong decision. Willam Barr told the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing on Tuesday he would have left the Cole Memo in place, referring to the business interests that had developed and their “settled expectations.”
During the afternoon session, Senator Cory Booker (D) of NJ asked Barr, “Do you believe it was the right decision to rescind the Cole Memorandum.”
Barr replied, “My approach to this would be not to upset settle expectations that have arisen as a result of the Cole Memorandum. Investments have been made. So, there’s been a reliance on it. I don’t think it’s appropriate to upset those interests.”
He also mention that he thought the current state of affairs was broken, stating, “However, I think the current situation is untenable and really has to be addressed. It’s almost like a backdoor nullification of federal law to me. It’s a binary choice.”
Barr also clearly stated that he believed, personally, the current approach to marijuana enforcement is incorrect and that there should be strict federal control. He also indicated Congress should clear this up the “right way.”
“I think its a mistake to back off marijuana,” he told the committee. “If we want to have a federal approach then lets get there and let’s get there the right way.”
Barr is expected to make it through the Senate confirmation easily. He served as Attorney General in 1991 to 1993 for George HW Bush.