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Colorado Business Groups Ask Feds to Enforce Marijuana Laws

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #762)

Some 20 Colorado business organizations wrote a letter to US Attorney General Eric Holder last Friday urging him to enforce federal laws barring the sale and possession of marijuana. In doing so, the business groups are taking direct aim at the will of the voters, who passed Amendment 64 legalizing marijuana with 55% of the vote last month.

"Passage of Amendment 64 left considerable uncertainty for employers and business in Colorado with regard to their legal rights and obligations," the letter said. "We encourage enforcement of the [federal Controlled Substances Act] to provide the certainty and clarity of law we seek."

Amendment 64 legalizes the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana and the cultivation of up to six plants by adults 21 and over. That part of the amendment will go into effect by January 5 at the latest. It also directs the state to craft a system of regulations for commercial marijuana cultivation and sales. The state has until October 2013 to complete that task.

Still, marijuana remains illegal under federal law, but the Justice Department headed by Holder has yet to signal how it will respond. The Obama administration initially backed off enforcing federal laws in medical marijuana states, but for the last two years has stepped up enforcement actions.

For Coloradans and others who want to know who is attempting to undercut the will of the voters and respond in an informed and appropriate manner, here is the complete list of signatory organizations:

  • Colorado Concern
  • Northern Colorado Legislative Alliance
  • Associated Builders and Contractors -- Rocky Mountain Chapter
  • Colorado Technology Association
  • Fort Collins Chamber of Commerce
  • Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce
  • Greeley Chamber of Commerce
  • Pueblo Chamber of Commerce
  • Colorado Springs Regional Business Alliance
  • Northern Colorado Economic Development Corporation
  • Upstate Colorado Economic Development Association
  • Colorado Contractors Association
  • International Electrical Contractors -- Rocky Mountain Chapter
  • National Federation of Independent Business -- Colorado and Wyoming Chapter
  • Club 20
  • Loveland Chamber of Commerce
  • Colorado Bankers Association
  • Colorado Auto Recyclers Association
  • Chrisland Commercial
  • Douglas County Business Alliance

(Update: One of our readers has posted contact information for these organizations, here in the comments section.)

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Mr. Natural (not verified)

Well, isn't the motivation behind this so very obvious?

Those people who spearheaded the overall legalization of marijuana in Colorado by establishing medical marijuana dispensaries are now pleading with the Federal Government to enforce the Federal laws.

Can anyone tell me why? 

Obvious right?  The overall legalization of marijuana in Colorado will put dispensaries out of business.  Plain and simple.

Follow the money honey.

For those dispensaries who called on the FED - I say shame on YOU.  You are only protecting your cash flow - if you really cared about the patient it would make no difference - patients who need the substance will get it and those who were afraid to ask for it before will get it now.

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 4:29pm Permalink
Bronus (not verified)

In reply to by Mr. Natural (not verified)

When dispensaries became legal in Colorado, dispensaries were made illegal in Grand Junction, Fruita, and any unincorporated land in Mesa County. There is one dispensary in the area, is in Palisade, the only other incorporated city in the county. It is over an hour drive to the next nearest one. Both the Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce and Club 20, which is headquartered in Grand Junction signed the letter. They are the actual hypocrites, not the dispensaries. Grand Junction is incredibly conservative. They hate Obamacare because it is the federal government interfering with the state, but want the federal government to send in the DEA to counteract a state law. That is the definition of hypocrite.

Thu, 12/13/2012 - 5:10pm Permalink
Bhonze (not verified)

That is Bull shit, the people have spoken and the Business groups do not run the United States of America. Shut The F^@k up!!!

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 4:35pm Permalink
NannyState (not verified)

In reply to by Bhonze (not verified)

Actually, the US Supreme Court, in its infinite wisdom, decided in Citizens United that corporations are people too. Whodathunkit? I think I saw a pig flying today...

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 8:35pm Permalink
scrootalaboo (not verified)

They can bark all they want.  Colorado voted to change their constitution which can only be changed by the will of the voters.  They did it right.  The CO legislature is powerless essentially.  Unless the feds have the man power to bust down the doors of every six-plant operation, its a done deal.  Forward we go with revenue for schools and personal liberty for all adults...finally.  Now is the time to keep throwing grow after grow at the federal government...well, more than ever anyways.

Lets also keep in mind the Appellate Courts are currently listening to the rescheduling trial that the DEA has refused to; emphatically so over the past ten and consistently so over the past 40.  Once it's bumped from Schedule I...the flood comes now that the gates have been opened.

gurgle gurgle goes my bong in the background.

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 4:52pm Permalink
scrootalaboo (not verified)

They can bark all they want.  CO amended their constitution.  The State legislature is essentially powerless, and unless the feds have the manpower to knock down the door of every six-plant operation and eight-ounce toker (which they don't), then its a done deal.  Colorado is the model for other states to follow.


The motivation behind it is pretty complex, just like the money trail. 

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 4:59pm Permalink
Mark Mitcham (not verified)

Now we see the beast right out in the open.  The powers that hide behind the

institutionalized structures of deceit and greed have stepped out into the clearing.

It is naked power, and it is pissed.  It doesn't give a damn about justice, never did.

You and I are nothing but cattle to these things.

They live!  (aka John Carpenter.)

Can you see them?


Mon, 12/03/2012 - 5:31pm Permalink
Castle McCormmick (not verified)

Dispensaries shouldn't be too worried about this.. If your smart you'll change with your customers, you wont have the money coming in for bud sure, but clones, seeds, oils, etc... Will still be highly desirable, and if set up properly you will be a beacon to other states for people who want to get your product, cause its number one. Not because you want to cry about what the people want when it cuts into your profits.

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 6:04pm Permalink
Uncle Bob (not verified)

Woah, look out.. power players such as "Club 20" and "Colorado Concern" are speaking out against legalization! *rolls eyes*

Ok, let's count the number of businesses in Colorado and tally up how many aren't writing letters to Holder about Amendment 64.  

I wouldn't worry so much about this "news."  We knew going in to all this that people were going to oppose it. These are small fry.  What are 20 businesses versus the nearly 1.3 million voters who passed Amendment 64?  Nothing, that's what.

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 7:15pm Permalink
The future;s l… (not verified)

They didn't get their way ,so now its time to cry( boo-hoo) Eric make them stop.we cant have legal pot, people might smoke it.what are we going to do? well for starters take a deep breath and relax because almost everyone that likes pot have been blazing the hell out of it already so you wont see much difference other than, now cops will have time to investigate real crimes. Also ,some of your taxes may go for useful things instead of paying to incarcerate non violent( probably more law abiding than you) cannabis consumers.Really you cant make an unjust law and expect it to stand should have been repealed long get ready to live in a better world as soon as this spreads globally,and it will because its the right thing to do ......youll see.

Mon, 12/03/2012 - 7:36pm Permalink
Goofstr (not verified)

The feds can do nothing except attack state legal medical marijuana dispensaries. Nobody has committed a crime yet. There is no law against a state amending their own constitution. The feds are stuck waiting until someone starts doing something like growing or selling in Colorado.

These people are not very bright. By jumping the gun they have exposed themselves and their intents. When the time comes people will have had time too negate their effect. The dogs can bark all they want, because this wagon train is going to keep on rolling.

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 3:55am Permalink
Bhonze (not verified)

Hey, don't support businesses that are part of these Chambers if they don't speak against the Chamber Leaders and furthermore the Cannabis Stores should join these chambers so they can have a voice in the community.

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 11:22am Permalink
someguy (not verified)

If i were in Colorado and concerned about this, I'd be very suspicious. "Business Groups" are often multi-sate and national, so it is altogether possible that the people who started this thing don't even live in Colorado. The chances are good that the same old wealthy corporate federalist probitionists are behind this.

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 1:11pm Permalink
Anon (not verified)

Hey look, a nice list of businesses and groups to BOYCOTT.  Don't buy or support an effing thing these MFs do.  BLACK LIST THEM!!!! 

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 2:19pm Permalink
Michael Miller (not verified)

In reply to by Anon (not verified)

You are 110% correct.  I'm going to keep this list, and when I visit or move to Colorado, I will have it. 


How about Ken Buck of Weld County?  He's still going to prosecute despite the wish of the voters in his state.  I hope everyone moves out of that county.  How does one tell tell the voters "I don't care what you want... I'm going to prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law regardless."  Wow. 

Thu, 12/06/2012 - 1:57pm Permalink
Giordano (not verified)

Give'em hell:
Tue, 12/04/2012 - 3:04pm Permalink
kickback (not verified)

There are a good many chamber of commerce`s on that list . Go to their website and look at the businesses that they represent the interest of .  The reason they oppose it is because of drug testing issues . The companies don`t care if you go home and get drunk , just don`t smoke that " legal " plant because we will have to fire you when you fail that random drug test . These companies try to hide behind their local chamber of commerce . Boycott the companies . The Cannabis Industry is coming to town . A new reality is settling in . The crybabies are the ones who feel threatened by this new reality . Remember , a company can`t vote . The will of the voters will stand .

Tue, 12/04/2012 - 9:22pm Permalink
Steve Newcomb (not verified)

Dear "Chambers of Commerce":

"The Present Crisis" is a poem written by James Russell Lowell when American slavery was still the law of the land.  With the Drug War now certain to end, you need to remember his words (below), that foreshadowed the American Civil War.  You need to remember what happened to the owners of cotton plantations, and to all the slave-based industries.  You need to stop thinking about employees as business tools and instead start thinking of them as human beings, like yourselves.  You need to stop worrying about preserving your tools of oppression, such as drug testing, and start worrying about how to operate your businesses in such a way as to thrive in a climate of ever-increasing universal human rights.  Think about it.  Your tIme is short.  The Present Crisis is upon you.  Adapt or die.

"The Present Crisis"

When a deed is done for Freedom, through the broad earth's aching breast
Runs a thrill of joy prophetic, trembling on from east to west,
And the slave, where'er he cowers, feels the soul within him climb
To the awful verge of manhood, as the energy sublime
Of the century burst full-blossomed on the thorny stem of Time.

Through the walls of hut and palace shoots the instantaneous throe,
When the travail of the Ages wrings earth's systems to and fro;
At the birth of each new Era, with a recognizing start,
Nation wildly looks at nation, standing with mute lips apart,
And glad Truth's yet mightier man-child leaps beneath the Future's heart.

(There are 18 verses.  Read the whole poem at <a href=""></a>.


Thu, 12/06/2012 - 3:24pm Permalink

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