Brian Mudd’s Q&A of the day – States defying federal authority

Brian Mudd’s Q&A of the day – States defying federal authority 

It’s the Q&A of the day. Each day I’ll feature a listener question that’s been submitted by one of these methods.  


Twitter: @brianmuddradio 

Facebook: Brian Mudd 

Today’s comes from Tim: 

I truly don't understand how states can legalize marijuana for recreational usage when the federal government looks at marijuana as being a schedule 1 drug. I know the Obama Administration was more lenient but, the Trump Administration has basically said that the federal prosecutors can go after those states that have legalized marijuana and pretty much shut down their operation and potentially prosecute them.  

I don't understand how states can basically give the middle finger to federal law. I always scratch my head over this and it's not from some Scalp condition that requires Selsun Blue.   

Have a great day. Awesome job!!! 

Bottom Line: Hi Tim, I feel your frustration, but I do want to clarify a couple of points. In reality states can’t legalize marijuana because it’s a schedule 1 drug. It’s one of my pet peeves about news reporting and the state politicians’ discussing of the issue. It’s not legal anywhere in the United States. That’s why for example the banking system can’t be used or anything that’s related to the federal government.  

Every state that’s legalized marijuana in any form is breaking the law. But like any criminal behavior...what does it take to stop it? Someone enforcing the law, right? This leads to your next point. Yes, the Obama Administration was lenient on enforcement but there’s not been much of a change under the Trump administration. Former AG Jeff Sessions did want to more aggressively prosecute states for violating federal law however President Trump made clear that he didn’t want that to happen. That’s why the only meaningful enforcement you see is within the banking and financial transaction side of the business that had direct federal oversight, or on the physician side of the industry. It’s why for example physicians can only “recommend” medical marijuana rather than having it prescribed.  

In many respects the marijuana issue is a different version of a similar thing to illegal immigration and “sanctuary” styled policies at the state and/or local level. No state or local government has any authority on these issues but unless the federal government will enforce the law, lawlessness ensues.

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