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U.S. Supreme Court Kills Effort to Overturn State Medical Marijuana Laws

Submitted by smorgan on
Good news! Something bad could have happened, but didn't:

California's medical marijuana law survived its most serious legal challenge today as the U.S. Supreme Court denied appeals by two counties that argued they were being forced to condone violations of federal drug laws.

The justices, without comment, denied a hearing to officials from San Diego and San Bernardino counties who challenged Proposition 215, an initiative approved by state voters in 1996 that became a model for laws in 12 other states. It allows patients to use marijuana for medical conditions with their doctor's recommendation. [San Francisco Chronicle]

Today's result was really a foregone conclusion because it's just a basic fact that states can make their own drug laws. Still, it's good that this happened insofar as it will hopefully serve to silence those who continue to cite conflict between state and federal laws as a reason why no one can have medical marijuana. They are completely wrong and it's amazing how many federal judges had to break it down for them.

For the hundredth time, conflict with federal law is not an obstacle to passing and implementing state laws that permit medical marijuana. Federal law enforcement can come in and cause trouble, but that doesn’t make state laws invalid. Those laws still apply and provide valuable protection against state police, who patients are more likely to come in contact with.

The very idea that federal law somehow cancels out state policies is just some made-up nonsense that enemies of medical marijuana have been spewing in desperation for several years now. Nice try, but you're wrong. Case closed.

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