Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide

A federal judge on Monday tossed out a lawsuit that sought to legalize cannabis under federal law, handing another setback to a movement aimed at effectively making the drug legal everywhere in the United States

The plaintiffs in the case included former NFL player Marvin Washington, along with a 12-year-old girl who uses medical marijuana to treat her chronic epilepsy and others who used the drug for medical reasons. Their lawsuit, which named Attorney General Jeff Sessions as a defendant, argued that the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is unconstitutional with regard to its classification of marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance, the federal government’s most dangerous classification that is also reserved for drugs such as heroin and LSD. The lawsuit called that classification “irrational” based on the argument that marijuana serves a real medical purpose for countless patients across the country.

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Huddleston, Tom Jr. “Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide.” fortune.com. 27 February 2018. Web. 6 April 2018.

States consider ‘sanctuary’ status for cannabis businesses

Taking a cue from the fight over immigration, some states that have legalized marijuana are considering providing so-called sanctuary status for licensed pot businesses, hoping to protect the fledgling industry from a shift in federal enforcement policy.

Just hours after U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced on Jan. 4 that federal prosecutors would be free to crack down on marijuana operations as they see fit, Jesse Arreguin, the mayor in Berkeley, California, summoned city councilman Ben Bartlett to his office with a novel idea.

Berkeley was already the first city in the nation to formally declare itself a sanctuary city on immigration, barring city officials from cooperating with federal authorities. Why not do the same thing with marijuana? Last month, it did.

“We knew we had to do something,” Bartlett said. “This is a new engine of a healthy economy.”

Others may soon follow Berkeley’s lead: Alaska, California and Massachusetts lawmakers are among those with similar bills pending, though the chances for passage is unclear.

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“States consider ‘sanctuary’ status for cannabis businesses.” chicago.suntimes.com. 6 March 2018. Web. 6 March 2018.