Sheriffs File Lawsuit Over Colorado Legalization

Sheriffs from three states have filed a lawsuit against Colorado over recreational marijuana, presenting another legal challenge for the controversial legislation.

Twelve sheriffs and prosecutors filed the suit, saying state legalization is trumped by federal law and therefore violates the supremacy clause of the U.S. Constitution. The plaintiffs said they’ve suffered “direct and significant harm” from Colorado’s legalization of cannabis.

The suit names Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper as defendant.

It’s the latest in a series of lawsuits against Colorado’s rec law. Nebraska and Oklahoma filed a lawsuit with the Supreme Court late last year, saying they’ve had to increase spending on law enforcement to control marijuana pouring across their borders. Washington DC-based Safe Streets Alliance has filed a pair of lawsuits against the state to stop Colorado’s recreational marijuana industry.

But pro-legalization group Marijuana Majority said the sheriffs are on the wrong side of history.

“While a growing majority of Americans supports replacing failed prohibition policies with legalization, there will always be some people who desperately try to cling to what’s familiar,” Marijuana Majority Chairman Tom Angell said in a release. “The people of Colorado and other states have spoken, and now these prohibitionists who lost at the ballot box on Election Day are trying to overturn the will of the voters by making a last-ditch attempt in the courts.”

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