FEDERALISM AND MEDICAL MARIJUANA LAWS

FEDERALISM AND MEDICAL MARIJUANA LAWS
Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia currently have laws legalizing marijuana in some form. Four states, Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington state, and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana for recreational use. None of this changes the fact that according to the Title 21 of the Federal Drug Code, marijuana is still illegal in the United States.

Before responding to this question, please review the chapter 3 notes posted on Blackboard, in particular the meaning of federalism and the Supremacy Clause.

Based upon your understanding of federalism and the Supremacy Clause of the US Constitution, do you believe the federal government has the right to preempt state medical and/ or recreational marijuana laws? Why or why not? Who should be responsible for drug enforcement in the United States, the states or the federal government? The Constitution gives “police powers” to the states. Does this mean states should be free to make and enforce their own laws for medical/ recreational marijuana use?

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