Considering the fact that U.S. Attorney John Walsh's MMJ memo to the Colorado Legislature — which reiterated the feds' confusing stance that marijuana is still federally illegal, so watch out, and also in-compliance patients have nothing to fear — comes from a federal agency, there's been very little in the way of comment on that level.
Seeking to alleviate that need, we contacted both of Colorado's U.S. senators, Rep. Doug Lamborn, Rep. Diana DeGette of Denver and Rep. Jared Polis of Boulder. Polis is the main proponent in the House for changing marijuana from a Schedule I substance. We even asked if Gov. John Hickenlooper had five minutes to relay a comment. The response, via director of communications Eric Brown? "He does not."
So, while senatorial discussion was a failure — the only response to my e-mail from Tara Trujillo, communications director for Mark Udall, was, "What is the MMJ industry" — and DeGette didn't return a phone call and Lamborn had no comment, Polis said this in support of medical marijuana:
"I hope the Justice Department will respect the laws passed by the voters of Colorado and the rules propagated by our General Assembly. The Department should follow the principles it outlined in the Ogden memo: That those who are in clear compliance with state laws will not be raided. Colorado has the most robust regulatory structure in the country and our dispensaries are clearly operating under state law."
As of press time, House Bill 1043 — the MMJ "clean-up" bill — is headed for passage, with a few amendments: Notably, the one-year moratorium has been re-inserted into the bill.
Suffering the opposite fate is House Bill 1261, the THC driving limits bill. After being killed in the Senate (see "Noted" here), Colorado Attorney General John Suthers sent an apoplectic news release.
"It is dumbfounding that the Colorado Senate could fail to pass a per se marijuana bill," says Suthers. "The Senate's vote exhibited not only a lack of concern for the safety of Colorado drivers and pedestrians, but also an inability to lead. This is yet another public policy failure by the General Assembly to enact appropriate marijuana policies in Colorado."
Coloradans 4 Cannabis Patient Rights (c4cpr.org) is holding its second protest of the firing of Fountain baseball coach Jay Sanner at 10 a.m. this Saturday, May 14, at John Metcalf Memorial Park. The first protest attracted some 30 participants, says C4CPR president Audrey Hatfield.
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