"No really," attorney general Eric Holder seems to be saying. "We still don't care that much about medical marijuana enforcement. But California's got their own stuff to deal with." In a House Judiciary Committee hearing yesterday, in response to questioning from a congressman about the medical marijuana crackdown in California that has succeeded in closing hundreds of dispensaries in the last two months, Holder reiterated that the Justice Department remains firmly behind the Ogden memo the 2009 document which declared that the sale and use of medical marijuana in states where it's legal are a low priority for federal prosecutors. However, in the case of California he got more equivocal.
"Where a state has taken a position, has passed a law and people are acting in conformity with the law not abusing the law that would not be a priority with the limited resources of our Justice Department." So, basically he's saying that the CA prosecutors can do what they wish if they feel like the medical pot community has abused the state statute. In San Francisco, that has meant closing several dispensaries that the city allowed despite their flouting the state law that they be more than 1,000 feet from playgrounds or schools. In other parts of the state, the reasoning behind the crackdown becomes less clear.
This all came after questioning from Colorado congressman Jared Polis, who sounds paranoid that the Justice Department will start crackind down on Colorado's medical marijuana industry next. Watch his questioning, and Holder's response, below.