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Federal spending bill bars Justice Department’s trying to prevent states from implementing medical marijuana laws

Dec 24, 2014 Federal spending bill bars Justice Department’s trying to prevent states from implementing medical marijuana laws

The recently-passed federal spending bill bars the United States Justice Department from trying to prevent states from implementing medical marijuana laws. However, this does not automatically mean that the Justice Department will not continue to raid and prosecute non-governmental entities that grow and sell marijuana ostensibly for medical marijuana purposes.

The argument can be made that federal prosecution of private entities pursuing state-permitted medical marijuana activity is a backdoor effort to prevent states from implementing their medical marijuana laws, particularly when a private entity is acting as a contractor for a state government. In any event, here is the text from the federal spending bill:

None of the funds made available in this Act to the Department of Justice may be used, with respect to the States of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin, to prevent such States from implementing their own State laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of medical marijuana.

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