Governor Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson say they are ready to defend Washington’s marijuana laws as the White House suggests a crackdown on legalization could be coming.
Resistance to President Donald Trump’s administration is widespread. Protestors regularly show up at town halls to demand answers on healthcare. Millions around the world supported the Women’s March, held the day after President Trump’s inauguration. Demonstrators overwhelmed airports during the botched rollout of Trump’s travel ban.
But a new issue may soon ratchet up the anti-Trump protests. As we mentioned yesterday, the marijuana industry was already fighting back (story below) in the wake of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s suggestion that a crackdown on recreational marijuana could be imminent.
Industry response to Spicerâ€™s surprising statements (and unsubstantiated claims connecting recreational use and opioid addiction) was strong and swift…
Industry support is necessary, but assistance from government officials will be needed to win this debate. Washington state’s Attorney General Bob Ferguson could be exactly what the anxious marijuana industry needs right now.
“I will resist any efforts by the Trump administration to undermine the will of the voters in Washington state,” Ferguson said yesterday.
Ferguson’s effort did not start yesterday. On February 15, he and Governor Inslee sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions. They argued that the black market for marijuana has been crippled by a regulated marijuana industry. They also pointed out how limited police resources should not be diverted toward fighting marijuana.
“Given the limited resources available for marijuana law enforcement, a return to ‘full’ prohibition is highly unlikely to end the illicit production, trafficking and consumption of marijuana,” Ferguson and Inslee stated in the letter to Sessions.
Governor Inslee urged the Trump administration to think long and hard about taking mass federal action against state-legal marijuana. “They would be on the wrong side of history,” Inslee said.
Ferguson feels that his lawyers are “quite prepared” for a legal fight if the White House moves forward and targets state marijuana laws. He has a recent track record of fighting the Trump administration in federal court. Ferguson sued the White House when the Trump Travel ban was instituted. Ultimately, that ban was struck down the by 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.