AZ Governors Waiver Allows State Attorney General to go After Medical Marijuana
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer has signed a waiver that allows Attorney General Tom Horne to try to close down the marijuana dispensaries that her state health department is in the process of licensing.
AG Horne recently released a formal legal opinion which stated that the voter-approved medical marijuana in AZ violated federal law. Why would he bother stating this obvious fact formally unless he was planning on doing something about it?
For her part, the Governor said Thursday that she does not intend to block Health Director Will Humble from continuing the process of issuing state permits. And Humble, who conducted a lottery Tuesday to see who gets to serve each of the 126 health districts in the state, said the first of those shops could be open by the end of this month.
"I gave him a waiver and put kind of a wall between Mr. Horne and myself so that he could represent this position and he could still represent me with other attorneys on the other side,' Brewer said.
AG Horne said this arrangement will allow one of his deputies to continue to provide legal advice to Humble even as he personally pursues a court order declaring the dispensaries preempted by federal law.
As many may remember, Governor Brewer initially tried to halt the medical marijuana program. "I took it to court and I was ruled against, (with a judge) saying that I had to implement the law,” Brewer recalled Thursday ."So we moved forward under the direction of the court.”
But the governor said Horne and Montgomery remain free to try to shut down the dispensaries anyway.
"If they believe they have a reason to think they can get that overturned, they have that right and privilege to do that,” Brewer said. "But in the meantime we have and will continue to move forward until we hear differently.”
In other words, the battle over medical marijuana in AZ is far from over.
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