Drug Policy Alliance: Nebraska and Oklahoma Sue Colorado Over Marijuana Legalization

Suit Claims Neighboring States Have Increased Law Enforcement Costs Due to CO Law and that Federal Law Trumps State Law

Washington, DC—(ENEWSPF)—December 18, 2014. Today, Nebraska and Oklahoma sued the state of Colorado over its marijuana legalization law, saying the law has created an increased law enforcement burden in neighboring states. The suit, filed by Nebraska Attorney General John Bruning and Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, claims federal marijuana prohibition preempts Colorado’s law. Colorado voters decisively adopted Amendment 64 in 2012.

Statement from Tamar Todd, Director, Marijuana Law and Policy, Drug Policy Alliance

“This is a misguided effort to undo cautious and effective state-level regulation of marijuana and to undermine the will of the voters and legislators who enacted it.  Today’s action isn’t just a challenge to Colorado but to the ability and authority of all states to regulate and control marijuana within their borders as they see fit. It implicates the four states that have adopted ballot initiatives by decisive margins to tax and regulate marijuana for adults as well as the 34 states that have adopted laws to regulate medical marijuana.

“The Federal government itself has not challenged the regulatory law in Colorado nor did they choose to interfere with its implementation. To the contrary, the government has deprioritized enforcement of state-level marijuana reforms and acknowledged the interests that both states and the Federal government have in openly regulating marijuana. And just this past week, a historic vote in Congress barred the use of federal resources from interfering with state medical marijuana programs. Today’s action is nothing more than an effort to cling to the failed policies of the war on drugs and interfere with a new common sense, less harmful approach to marijuana.”

Related Material: 

Associated Press

2 states challenge Colorado marijuana legalization, By Grant Schulte, December 18, 2014, http://www.seattlepi.com/news/us/article/2-states-challenge-Colorado-marijuana-legalization-5966391.php

LA Times

Congress quietly ends federal government’s ban on medical marijuana, ‘The first time in decades that the federal government has curtailed its oppressive prohibition of marijuana’ Evan Halper, December 15, 2014, http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-medical-pot-20141216-story.html

Source: www.drugpolicy.org