Nebraska and Oklahoma file federal lawsuit against Colorado over marijuana policy
Both Nebraska and Oklahoma have filed a federal lawsuit against Colorado, claiming that the state’s recent legalization of marijuana is unconstitutional under federal law.
“Federal law undisputedly prohibits the production and sale of marijuana,” Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning said Thursday in a statement. “Colorado has undermined the United States Constitution, and I hope the U.S. Supreme Court will uphold our constitutional principles.”
Colorado’s Attorney General John Suthers plans to defend the state, saying “because neighboring states have expressed concern about Colorado-grown marijuana coming into their states, we are not entirely surprised by this action,” Suthers said. “However, it appears the plaintiffs’ primary grievance stems from non-enforcement of federal laws regarding marijuana, as opposed to choices made by the voters of Colorado. We believe this suit is without merit and we will vigorously defend against it in the U.S. Supreme Court.”
Bruning, along with Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, argue that under the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause, Colorado’s legalization of recreational marijuana is unconstitutional because marijuana remains illegal under federal law. The clause states that in general, federal law takes precedence over state law.
“The illegal products being distributed in Colorado are being trafficked across state lines thereby injuring neighboring states like Oklahoma and Nebraska,” Pruitt said in a statement.