Skip to main content

CO Gun Rights for Pot Users Initiative Filed, DE MedMJ Bill Filed, More... (12/18/23)

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #1201)

The parties in a lawsuit over the constitutionality of imposing federal pot prohibition in legal marijuana states agree to an extension, an Italian petition drive to force parliament to take up marijuana legalization is underway, and more.

Marijuana Policy

Feds and Pot Businesses Jointly Agree on Deadline Extension for Lawsuit Challenging Prohibition. The Justice Department and a coalition of marijuana businesses have agreed to jointly request a deadline extension for the filing of initial briefs in a lawsuit that seeks to block the enforcement of federal marijuana prohibition in states where it is legal.

The pot businesses argue that perpetuating prohibition in states that have legalized it is unconstitutional because it creates public safety risks and blocks those businesses from access to financial services and business tax deductions.

The lawsuit was filed by the multi-state operator Verano Holdings Corp. and two Massachusetts-based pot businesses, Canna Provisions and Wiseacre Farms, as well as Treevit CEO Gyasi Sellers. It was filed in US District Court in the Western District of Massachusetts.

In the joint filing last Friday, attorneys on both sides of the question mutually agreed to a seek a 28-day extension for the government's response to the lawsuit, bumping the date back from December 26 to January 23. On Monday, Judge Katherine A. Robertson granted the extension.

Colorado Initiative Could Ask Voters to Let Marijuana Users Obtain Concealed Carry Gun Permits. The gun rights group Guns for Everyone has filed an initiative to allow marijuana users to obtain concealed carry gun permits. Under current state law, which aligns with federal law, people using controlled substances, including marijuana, cannot obtain the permits.

The measure is currently being reviewed by the state Legislative Council Staff, which will examine its clarity and soundness before handing it off to the secretary of state's office for approval and titling. Once approved by that office, signature-gathering can begin. The proposal will need 125,000 valid voter signatures in a six-month period to qualify for the November 2024 ballot.

Organizers say it is a matter of fundamental fairness that marijuana users have the same rights as alcohol consumers, including the right to purchase firearms and obtain permits while also obeying laws to not be under the influence while in possession of a firearm.

Medical Marijuana

Delaware Medical Marijuana Expansion Bill Filed. A bill introduced last week, House Bill 285, would dramatically expand the state's medical marijuana program by removing the requirement that patients have one of a list of designated qualifying conditions in order to have medical marijuana recommended by a physician. Instead, doctors would be able to recommend it for any condition they believe it could benefit.

Sponsored by Rep. Ed Osienski (D), a medical marijuana champion, and three others, the bill would also allow residents 65 and over to self-certify their need for medical marijuana -- without any need for a recommendation from a health care provider.

The bill would also make registry cards good for two or three years instead of just one. Patients diagnosed with terminal illnesses could qualify for a card with an "indefinite" expiration date.

The bill comes even as the state prepares for the advent of a legal adult use market after legalizing it earlier this year.


Italian Reformers Near Halfway Point on Signatures to Put Marijuana Legalization Before Parliament. An effort to have parliament take up a proposal to legalize the home cultivation of four plants, the eventual creation of social clubs, and the elimination of penalties for marijuana consumers is reaching the halfway point in signature-gathering.

The move comes two years after a top Italian court stopped a referendum on marijuana legalization and psychedelic reform from going to the voters.

"Despite the defeat we suffered after the collection of signatures with the legal cannabis referendum, we have decided to insist until things change," said Marco Perduca, an advocate and former Italian senator. (Perduca is also a member of the board of directors of, publisher of this newsletter.) "Parliament will be forced to listen to us, but only when we have collected 50,000 signatures," he added. "Don't miss your signature to change Italy."

Signature-gathering began about 10 days ago and organizers have already gathered about 20,000 certified signatures. If the campaign reaches 50,000 signatures, lawmakers in Italy's parliament would be forced to formally consider the proposal.

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.

Add new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.