A letter went out today to the federal government asking for marijuana to be reclassified as a drug so it can be prescribed by doctors and filled by pharmacists. Some 42 lawmakers in both the House and Senate -- including seven Republicans -- signed onto the letter to the Drug Enforcement Administration to make marijuana a Schedule II drug, meaning it could be used for medical treatment.
Also today, Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle, introduced Senate Joint Memorial 8017 that essentially makes the same request.
Last November, Gov. Chris Gregoire and Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee petitioned the DEA to downgrade marijuana. Washington and Rhode Island are two of the 16 states -- as well as the District of Columbia -- which permit medical use of the drug. Washington approved its law in 1998, but it only allows doctors the right to recommend -- not prescribe -- marijuana for people suffering from cancer and other conditions causing "intractable pain."