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Colorado governor to potheads: 'Don't break out the Cheetos'

Published: November 7, 2012
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Source: NBC News

The reason is that marijuana is still a controlled substance under federal law, raising all sorts off issues for how Colorado and Washington, the other state where voters decriminalized the recreational use of marijuana Tuesday, will implement their initiatives.

“The voters have spoken and we have to respect their will,” Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) said after the vote. “This will be a complicated process, but we intend to follow through. That said, federal law still says marijuana is an illegal drug, so don’t break out the Cheetos or goldfish too quickly.”

In both states, adults aged 21 and older will be allowed to possess a small amount of marijuana, which will be sold in only state-licensed stores where it will be heavily taxed. For the most part, pot could not be consumed in public. In Colorado, the amendment also allows people to grow a few plants at home.

Dr. Kevin A. Sabet, former senior drug policy advisor to the Obama administration and director of the Drug Policy Institute at the University of Florida, suggests these results could portend a growing weed war between the feds and the states.

“Once these states actually try to implement these laws, we will see an effort by the feds to shut it down,” Sabet said. “We can only guess now what exactly that would look like, but the recent U.S. Attorney actions against medical marijuana portends an aggressive effort to stop state-sponsored growing and selling at the outset.” 

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