Legal Weed’s Advances and Lawsuits to Overturn Them
Legal Weed’s Advances and Lawsuits to Overturn Them. Paul Armentano, Deputy Director of NORML, talks about how and why lawsuits have been filed in three of the five states where some form of marijuana was legalized on Nov. 3rd.
First the why
Armentano called these lawsuits frivolous attempts to undermine the democratic process. “Since 1996 when California legalized medical marijuana, voters in 35 states have gone to the ballot box to legalize adult-use or medical cannabis. Where they have done that, they’ve been successful. The reality is: when we are given the chance to vote for legal marijuana, we win.” In addition to the unprecedented actions of trying to overturn the will of the voters, opponents of legal marijuana have also tried to kick the issue off the ballot before it even got there. That tactic was unsuccessful in Arizona and unfortunately, it worked in Nebraska.
Invalidating legally cast ballots after the elections seems to be the tactic de jour of losing opponents. Regardless, Armentano doesn’t think it will work. “They (prohibitionists) have lost the hearts and minds of the American people on this issue. There’s now a supermajority in this country who believe that marijuana should be legal and will continue to vote for it.”
The new administration in the White House
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris has said the Biden administration would decriminalize marijuana and automatically expunge all marijuana use convictions and incarcerations. Harris has also been the chief sponsor of the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act in the Senate. Armentano thinks that once cannabis is removed from its Schedule l spot on the DEA’s list of Controlled Substances and dealt with under the jurisdiction of individual states, like alcohol, the incoming Democratic administration will back that sort of cannabis reform…so long as the prohibitionists and obstructionists don’t stand in the way.
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