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Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:33 AM

Calif. Gov. Brown: DOJ, Obama should 'respect' state marijuana laws

Source: The Hill

Calif. Gov. Brown: DOJ, Obama should 'respect' state marijuana laws
By Zack Colman - 11/11/12 10:12 AM ET

California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) said the federal government should let recently passed marijuana legalization laws stand in Colorado and Washington.

Its time for the Justice Department to recognize the sovereignty of the states, Brown said Sunday on CNNs State of the Union. I believe the president and the Department of Justice ought to respect the will of these states.



Colorado and Washington legalized marijuana for recreational use through ballot measures last week.
But marijuana is still outlawed at the federal level, which likely foretells a legal battle over implementing the state laws.

Read more: http://thehill.com/video/policy-areas/267241-calif-gov-brown-feds-should-respect-state-marijuana-laws

49 replies, 6604 views

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Reply Calif. Gov. Brown: DOJ, Obama should 'respect' state marijuana laws (Original post)
kpete Nov 2012 OP
CaliforniaPeggy Nov 2012 #1
bhikkhu Nov 2012 #2
BlueCaliDem Nov 2012 #14
msongs Nov 2012 #20
BlueCaliDem Nov 2012 #21
Socal31 Nov 2012 #36
Xithras Nov 2012 #49
Ecumenist Nov 2012 #44
Panasonic Nov 2012 #3
musiclawyer Nov 2012 #4
coalition_unwilling Nov 2012 #5
Towlie Nov 2012 #6
Z_California Nov 2012 #8
slackmaster Nov 2012 #9
hughee99 Nov 2012 #11
Ter Nov 2012 #12
Towlie Nov 2012 #29
byeya Nov 2012 #33
Comrade Grumpy Nov 2012 #17
TeamPooka Nov 2012 #28
Occulus Nov 2012 #31
Moonwalk Nov 2012 #24
rhett o rick Nov 2012 #25
LineLineReply +
struggle4progress Nov 2012 #37
progressoid Nov 2012 #39
LineReply I
heaven05 Nov 2012 #7
Coyotl Nov 2012 #19
Lionessa Nov 2012 #10
StrictlyRockers Nov 2012 #13
Spitfire of ATJ Nov 2012 #15
nlkennedy Nov 2012 #16
Le Taz Hot Nov 2012 #18
nbsmom Nov 2012 #34
Le Taz Hot Nov 2012 #41
madrchsod Nov 2012 #22
judesedit Nov 2012 #23
TeamPooka Nov 2012 #27
TeamPooka Nov 2012 #26
kestrel91316 Nov 2012 #30
libdem4life Nov 2012 #32
Canuckistanian Nov 2012 #35
randome Nov 2012 #42
Comrade Grumpy Nov 2012 #46
Freddie Stubbs Nov 2012 #48
sarcasmo Nov 2012 #38
NorthCarolina Nov 2012 #40
randome Nov 2012 #43
Comrade Grumpy Nov 2012 #45
Kingofalldems Nov 2012 #47

Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:36 AM

1. That's my governor!

Jerry is no hypocrite.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:39 AM

2. I hope so...this is one thing that couldn't be done well before the election

without seeing Obama tarred and feathered as the "drug lord" candidate, which would play too easily to existing racial stereotypes.

The easy thing would be to end federal enforcement on marijuana, as there are such a well-voted on variety of adequate state laws, and this would also free up a great deal of DEA manpower to go after the really deadly stuff.

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Response to bhikkhu (Reply #2)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:42 PM

14. I completely agree with you on all points.

When Reid and the Democrats in the senate change the filibuster rule, they need to push forward to legalize marijuana. Although I have never had the pleasure of using the stuff (my only vice is worse - cigarettes that are, for some strange reason, legal), it's a harmless plant and it has many, many benefits.

On the other hand, hearing from my group of young people, they don't want it legalized in CA because it would cost too much. Currently, it's inexpensive to get, but should it be legalized, it would double in price at minimum, and they don't want that. So it's kind of a dilemma.

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Response to BlueCaliDem (Reply #14)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:21 PM

20. grow your own solves that issue - government drug dealers no better than cartel ones nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #20)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:48 PM

21. It's still not legalized in CA - and that includes growing your own. eom

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Response to BlueCaliDem (Reply #21)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 09:13 PM

36. Anyone who cares to do a little research can obtain the necessary license to grow.

I was forced to call the local Sheriff on a tenant because they had visible plants on their side-yard, and they didn't do anything. They said that most times with a small-scale grow, the occupants have a license, so it is a waste of time to obtain a warrant.

Also, Ahhhnold made personal MJ less than a misdemeanor before leaving office.

It is basically legal around me....

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Response to BlueCaliDem (Reply #21)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:28 PM

49. Not legalized, but decriminalized.

Possession of up to one ounce of cannabis in California was decriminalized and reduced to Infraction status in 2010. Legally, it now has the same status as a parking ticket...you can't be arrested for it, there is no trial or judge, you can't be sentenced to any jail time or probation for it, and it won't appear on your criminal record. Like a traffic ticket, you CAN be slapped with a $100 fine, but even that is rare (DA's won't pursue it if you object, so the police rarely bother).

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Response to BlueCaliDem (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 11:14 AM

44. OH BS, if it becomes legal it will be legal to GROW your own, if that's your thing and CHEAPER

because it's not controlled by cartels. Alcohol during Prohibition was ALOT MORE EXPENSIVE beacause of the difficulty related to transporting it and delivering it.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:44 AM

3. Thank you Governor Brown.

 

For respecting states rights - from a Coloradan who's looking forward the day that everyone can smoke cannabis (and he can do it anyway since he has the red card)

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:45 AM

4. Like I have been saying

If the Feds act it ends in federal court and they lose big not based on tenth amendment. Rather science !

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:55 AM

5. Said the governor who allowed Oakland police to violate civil rights of

 

his constituents repeatedly (Occupy Oakland) with nary a word spoken.

Jerry Brown: what a putz.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:00 PM

6. Sorry, but even a pothead like Towlie shouldn't buy that argument.

"Sovereignty of the states" that trumps federal law is a notorious conservative position and it's wrong. We are One Nation, not 50 nations, especially when it comes to human rights issues.

Maybe pot ought to be legalized, but if so then it should be legalized at the federal level. This position is a dangerously slippery slope that could lead to draconian laws in the "red" states.

His heart may be in the right place but that argument sucks.

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:07 PM

8. And we have a winner

What Towlie said.

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:11 PM

9. Yes, and as long as people keep re-electing the same clowns to Congress...

 

...it won't happen.

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:20 PM

11. +1000

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:23 PM

12. So then repeal the 10th Amendment

 

By your argument, we don't need it.

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Response to Ter (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:34 PM

29. Here's a recent and relevant Supreme Court ruling concerning the Tenth Amendment:

In my opinion the Tenth Amendment is so short and vague that it's hard to tell what it's supposed to mean. I'm not saying that I agree with the following Supreme Court decision, or even that it makes any sense, but if you agree that the Supreme Court is the ultimate authority on what is and is not Constitutional then this appears to invalidate your Constitution-based protest:

from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tenth_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution#Commerce_clause

... the Commerce Clause was cited in the 2005 decision Gonzales v. Raich. In this case, a California woman sued the Drug Enforcement Administration after her medical marijuana crop was seized and destroyed by federal agents. Medical marijuana was explicitly made legal under California state law by Proposition 215; however, marijuana is prohibited at the federal level by the Controlled Substances Act. Even though the woman grew the marijuana strictly for her own consumption and never sold any, the Supreme Court stated that growing one's own marijuana affects the interstate market of marijuana. The theory was that the marijuana could enter the stream of interstate commerce, even if it clearly wasn't grown for that purpose and that was unlikely ever to happen (the same reasoning as in the Wickard v. Filburn decision). It therefore ruled that this practice may be regulated by the federal government under the authority of the Commerce Clause.

Remember, I didn't bring up the Constitution; you did. I only stated how I think things ought to be.

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Response to Towlie (Reply #29)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 03:43 PM

33. The Tenth Amendment confirms that federal legislation must be authorized by an enumerated power

 

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:55 PM

17. We are 50 states. Just check out the alcohol laws.

There is a wide variety of approaches.

As for "draconian laws" in the red states, that's what we have now. Colorado and Washington are leading the way to a new paradigm.

Pot should be legalized at the federal level, but that's not going to happen until more states lead the way.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #17)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:18 PM

28. Yes the states have different laws but Booze is legal on a federal level.

apples meet oranges.

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Response to TeamPooka (Reply #28)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 03:21 PM

31. If an Amendment was required for both alcohol prohibition and its repeal,

why was it never again, for any other substance?

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:07 PM

24. You are right that sovereignty of the states should not trump federal law, however...

...there are viable arguments for when and where federal law should trump states law. Which is to say, States DO have the right to create certain laws that the feds cannot or should not interfere with.

In most cases, it's agree that the federal law trumps when it comes to making sure U.S. citizens are safe and are not having their rights, as U.S. citizens, infringed upon (hence the argument that the states cannot restrict public places to people of one color or religion, etc.). Neither of these requirements are met by something like marijuana. What danger does marijuana pose to U.S. citizens (as compared to, say, firearms?). What rights does using it take away from any citizen?

A state can have laws against alcohol and the Feds won't interfere, lose ones or strict ones. So why interfere with marijuana? In what way is the state deciding on its use different from the state deciding on the use of alcohol?

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:14 PM

25. I agree. But the DOJ could/should respect the will of the states and

reduce the priority of marijuana persecution.

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 09:51 PM

37. +

thank you

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Response to Towlie (Reply #6)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 08:49 AM

39. Tell that to the President.

He's publicly stated that he supports each state deciding marriage equality.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:04 PM

7. I

Last edited Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:26 PM - Edit history (1)

hope the DOJ and POTUS make it clear that there are more important priorities like economy, wars, taxes, tax returns, hidden cayman and swiss accounts rather than someone smoking a joint in their living room relishing mittshits defeat.

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Response to heaven05 (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:01 PM

19. Better places to spend money than on incarceration and fat profits and pensions for prison industry

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:17 PM

10. Really it would be best if he'd just follow their lead and legalize it nationwide.

 

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:38 PM

13. Go Jerry!

yes!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:43 PM

15. It's one thing for the federal government to step in to free citizens from state law,..

...and it's quite another for them to step in to jail citizens.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:43 PM

16. Some Dem Govs have guts..

Remember how brash Cuomo was about legalizing gay marriage?

Governor Hickenlooper and Gov Brown are showing some spine here...

It may take 4 years to legalize at fed level, but it's starting to look possible.

If President Obama doesnt believe in it, then he doesnt believe in it. Who knows, he might get bored after the midterms...

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 12:59 PM

18. NOW he speaks out?

Well, better late than never, I suppose but he's been deafeningly silent while the feds raided hundreds of legal California dispensaries. AND he VETOED the Hemp Legalization Act that was passed by the California legislature for a third time.

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Response to Le Taz Hot (Reply #18)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:26 PM

34. He has to govern the whole state

If he'd taken a stand on legal pot before the elections, he might have threatened the passage of 30 (and perhaps, to a lesser extent Prop. 34, although he had a lower profile on that issue). It makes sense: he was saving all of his political capital to achieve that end. With that prop safely passed, and two other states voting for decriminalization of non-medical pot, he's now able to pivot to this other issue. IIRC, he used to go on KPFA (the Pacifica radio station) and KFOG (more mainstream radio) quite frequently and hold forth on decriminalization (before he ran for Governor in 2010).

"The big lock-up is about drugs. Here's the real scam. The drug war is one of the games to get more convictions and prisoners."
Jerry Brown on Crime Control, We the People Radio Network archives, October/November 1995.

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Response to nbsmom (Reply #34)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 09:27 AM

41. None of this is even remotely true.

The fact is that Jerry Brown has always been a good Party Boy and the DNC told him to stand down and that's what he did. He remained silent while thousands of MM patients watched as legal dispensary after legal dispensary was raided and closed down. He could have met with Obama. This state gave Obama 55 electoral college votes. Twice. You think Obama would refuse to return a phone call from the governor of the most populace state? He could have held a press conference and voiced his objections but nope. He remained silent. I find it amusing that NOW he's claiming "state's rights" just as long as it's in some other state.

Additionally, the Hemp Legalization only involved four counties and they volunteered for it. That included four RED counties. His 2 Republican predecessors vetoed it as well. There was NO reason for him to veto it. None. Legal hemp could have helped this state's fiscal woes tremendously and CA could have once again led the way on this very vital issue. But, again, the Party Bosses ordered him to veto it and that's what he did. Jerry Brown is all politician and if anyone believes differently then they've not done their homework.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 01:56 PM

22. state`s rights!...state`s rights!...state`s rights...!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:01 PM

23. The reason pot is illegal is it was cutting into the profits of petroleum and lumber/newspaper/Hears

Check out the history. Don't go by me, but hemp makes much better, more durable products than many sources used today. It makes better fuel and better paper. You can make clothes, rope, and on and on. But then the oil companies won't get richer. Hearst is now dead, and his paper probably is, too, but paper is still made out of wood, when it is not necessary. Look at Haiti. Cutting down all of their trees to make charcoal for cooking, heating. Other options haven't been as cheap...and they're broke. I'll bet you could make a brick for cooking or heating from hemp cheaply and it could save their country.

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Response to judesedit (Reply #23)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:17 PM

27. Pot and Hemp can save the world!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 02:16 PM

26. Prohibition is a failed public polcy...again. It needs to fixed at the Federal level.....

Because the states rights argument will be used against us with abortion issues etc.
I don't want to be able to smoke pot in CA while a guy in Alabama gets to tell a black woman she can't use his public restroom.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 03:19 PM

30. IMHO federal law should only apply to cannabis transported across state lines.

When I was in school and learned a tiny bit about civics, that's what we learned about the feds' ability to regulate commerce.

IMHO they need to BUTT OUT of what we do with cannabis within our individual states.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 03:28 PM

32. Sister lives in a dry county in Arkansas and has to go to the next county for wine.

That's County. Go figure.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 09:12 PM

35. Why has this never gone to court?

Honestly, Americans settle EVERYTHING in courts it seems.

Why hasn't there been a challenge?

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Response to Canuckistanian (Reply #35)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 10:14 AM

42. It's already settled law. Federal law trumps state law.

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Response to randome (Reply #42)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 11:33 AM

46. Fine. Let the feds enforce state level pot laws. Good luck with that, DEA.

The states have no obligation to enforce federal law; that's the feds' job.

The states have no obligation to make or keep marijuana illegal.

If the feds want to keep fighting the reefer wars, they can do it by themselves.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 11:32 PM

38. The right Attorney General will allow this to happen.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 09:19 AM

40. Since he cracks down on Medical Marijuana usage, odds are he will not view

recreational use as more sacrosanct.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 10:15 AM

43. A lot of state and local authorities REQUESTED the help of federal authorities.

So it's not as clear as Gov. Brown wants to make it out to be.

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Response to randome (Reply #43)

Mon Nov 12, 2012, 11:30 AM

45. Yes, the recalcitrant ones who don't want to obey the state law.

I encourage their constituents to vote them out of office.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:14 PM

47. Kick and Rec

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