Gardnersaid Trump assured him he would support legislation "to fix this states' rights issue once and for all".
In retaliation, " Gardner used his ability as a senator to stop consideration of any nominees to that division of Justice - yet another extraordinary measure for a senator to use contrary to an administration run by an individual member of the party.
Gardner said because of those commitments, he informed the Administration that he would be lifting remaining holds on DOJ nominees.
Gardner, whose home state legalized recreational marijuana in 2014, reacted by promising to block all Justice Department nominations.
Bob Ferguson, the Democratic attorney general of Washington state, which permits marijuana use, said Gardner's announcement made him "cautiously optimistic" but until there is a formal agreement or law on the issue he stands ready to defend "Washington's well-regulated marijuana industry".
"This can not be another episode of @realDonaldTrump telling somebody whatever they want to hear, only to change directions later on", U.S. Sen.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders affirmed the accounts of the president's thinking of Gardner - but Sessions' reaction wasn't immediately known.
And in January, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded an Obama-era memo which suggested that the federal government would not intervene in states where the drug is legal and said it would be up to federal prosecutors to decide how aggressively to enforce the law.
Inside his Friday statement, Gardner mentioned he'd released until he gained & ldquo; the full devotion that the guidelines of this Cole Memo wouldbe honored, a few holds, but abandoned others in place.
While dozens of states have legalized marijuana in one form or another, the substance remains federally prohibited. "We're consulting Congress about issues including states' rights of which the president is a firm believer and the statement that the senator put out earlier today is accurate", she said. Gardner has met with Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the official overseeing the Russian Federation probe who has been the target of Trump's ire.
U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., addresses reporters, January 22, 2018.
Legislation to protect states where marijuana is legal is still being drafted.
A bill has not been finalized, but Gardner has been talking quietly with other senators about a legislative fix that would, in effect, make clear that the federal government can not interfere with states that have voted to legalize marijuana.
The action came amid widespread speculation that Trump will remove Justice officials overseeing the Russian Federation investigation.