Supreme Court Seeks Obama Adm. Comment on MJ Case
function share_this(num) {
 tit=encodeURIComponent('Supreme Court Seeks Obama Adm. Comment on MJ Case');
 site = new Array(5);
 return false;

Supreme Court Seeks Obama Adm. Comment on MJ Case
Posted by CN Staff on May 04, 2015 at 17:46:00 PT
By Jess Bravin
Source: Wall Street Journal
Washington, D.C. -- The Supreme Court Monday asked the Obama administration to weigh in on a lawsuit brought by two states seeking to roll back Colorado’s legalization of recreational marijuana use.Nebraska and Oklahoma want the Supreme Court to invalidate Colorado laws implementing a 2012 voter initiative. The states claim Colorado has created a “cross-border nuisance” by increasing the supply of marijuana that could flow throughout the region, something exacerbated by the Obama administration’s policy to avoid interference with state experiments in legalization.
The petition, filed last December, asks the justices to step in under their special power to resolve disputes between states without waiting for lower courts to weigh in first. Such cases, heard under the court’s original, rather than appellate, jurisdiction, usually have involved boundary or water disputes between states. Rather than conduct their own trial, the justices typically assign an expert to gather the facts and make recommendations.“The administration’s wholesale disregard for the law led Oklahoma and Nebraska to sue Colorado to stop the stream of illegal marijuana flowing into our states as a result of Colorado’s legalization of the commercial production and sale of marijuana,” said Aaron Cooper, spokesman for Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt. Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson said he was “excited the court has recognized the importance of the issue to Nebraskans and I look forward hearing the federal government’s views.”“As we argued in our brief, the federal government’s decision to defer to Colorado’s regulation of marijuana is at the heart of this case,” said Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman. “We are pleased that the Supreme Court has asked the United States to explain its position on this litigation.”All three state attorneys general are Republicans.Colorado in court documents asked the Supreme Court to dismiss the case, arguing that a nationwide re-evaluation of marijuana policy is under way. About half the states have authorized at least medical use of marijuana or decriminalized individual possession, Colorado said, including Nebraska itself, which classifies first-time possession of an ounce or less as an infraction.In addition to Colorado, Alaska, Oregon, Washington state and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational use of marijuana.The U.S. Justice Department declined to comment. A legal brief putting forward the administration’s position isn’t expected for several months.University of Texas law professor Sanford Levinson said odds were slim that the justices would allow Nebraska and Oklahoma to circumvent the normal process of filing suit in district court and appealing to circuit court before seeking Supreme Court review.“The real lawsuit shouldn’t be filed against Colorado. It ought to be Nebraska and Oklahoma v. Lynch, to force the attorney general to enforce federal law which undoubtedly is supreme over Colorado law,” Mr. Levinson said.Marijuana remains prohibited under the federal Controlled Substances Act, but the Obama administration, after some uncertainty in its early years, has adopted a hands-off policy toward enforcement in states that are regulating individual use. In a 2013 memo, the Justice Department said marijuana enforcement traditionally has been a state matter, and that federal narcotics priorities should be focused elsewhere.The memo said that state legalization, when implemented with “strong and effective regulatory and enforcement systems,” would in general be let alone.In 2005, the Supreme Court upheld the federal prohibition of marijuana under Congress’s power to regulate interstate commerce.In addition to claiming Colorado’s legalization has increased the flow of marijuana into their states, Oklahoma and Nebraska contend it has undermined federal authority and U.S. obligations under international treaties.Source: Wall Street Journal (US)Author: Jess BravinPublished: May 4, 2015Copyright: 2015 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.Contact: wsj.ltrs wsj.comWebsite: -- Cannabis Archives 
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help 

Comment #3 posted by The GCW on May 04, 2015 at 19:37:14 PT
Puerto Rico & Tenn
Puerto Rico and Tennessee just made a move UP.I'm losing count...
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #2 posted by The GCW on May 04, 2015 at 19:21:49 PT
Moe, Larry & Curly
All three state attorneys general are Republicans.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #1 posted by Hope on May 04, 2015 at 18:15:37 PT
Why so long?
 "A legal brief putting forward the administration’s position isn’t expected for several months."
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment