Nebraska and Oklahoma Sue Colorado Over Legal Weed


Nebraska and Oklahoma, in a shocking level of disrespect for the concepts of federalism, are suing the State of Colorado over legal weed. This case would be heard at the Supreme Court, since in cases of suits by one state against another, the Supreme Court has Original Jurisdiction. You might be thinking this is an off topic post, but it’s not. If Nebraska and Oklahoma were to prevail on their claim, it would open the door to states like New York and New Jersey to sue neighboring or nearby states for their gun laws. The suit against Colorado rests on the notion that Colorado’s marijuana law creates an “interstate nuisance.” That sounds an awful lot like the kinds of suits PLCAA was meant to eliminate, but PLCAA doesn’t apply to suits between states.

The people behind the lawsuits by these two states should really think about the consequences of what they are doing. Do they believe in federalism, or not?

13 thoughts on “Nebraska and Oklahoma Sue Colorado Over Legal Weed”

  1. This is yet another piece of evidence that proves social “conservatives” simply pay lip service to the 10th Amendment despite all their Gadsden flag waving. They want their state to be free to do as it likes when it comes to furthering their “traditional values” but have no problem calling in the big bad federal government to squash the powers one doing something that goes against them.

    I used to say conservatives for all their faults were still our allies due to their staunch support of the 2A, but I’m pretty much convinced they are just as dangerous to individual liberty as progressives.

  2. More importantly it seems that if the plaintiffs prevail, then every state level drug conviction would be at risk.

  3. As a Coloradan I’m not crazy about legal weed but I’m not offended by it either as I lean toward the libertarian. But … what is the lawsuit based on? One issue unique here is that Colorado is refusing to enforce existing Federal law and the Feds are openly allowing it (as they do with medical weed everywhere).

    But while I see your point, there is no accepted legal ruling that access to any specific intoxicant is protected in any manner by the constitution. At least as people now look at the constitution (there was a time this was different, like when they had to pass an amendment to outlaw liquor sales and felt the only way they could limit gun ownership was through the right to tax and that any kind of a ban was not legal … but those days are long gone …).

    1. Now that I think about it, I’m not sure to what degree that these States even have legal standing. I don’t see how it necessarily follows that, just because the Federal Government has a law, that the State has to have (and enforce) that law as well.

      If a State decides not to have a law banning weed, but it’s still illegal on the Federal level, then doesn’t that just mean that it’s solely up to the Feds for enforcing the given law? Otherwise, could you imagine how many laws will have to be made in each State, because the Feds decide something is illegal?

      Another thought that comes to mind, though, is this: this law seems to have standing because the Feds have made something illegal. If New York makes something illegal, but it’s legal federally, will they still be able to sue their neighbors if they have different laws? (Never mind that the places with the carnage have more carnage than the places with all the legal guns…)

  4. People in general should think about how they feel about drug and gun laws. Very broadly, the breakdown tends to be that those who oppose drug restrictions favor gun control, with the those favoring more restrictions on drugs opposed to it.

    The problem is both these categories of law are a way for the government to create instant criminals where none need exist. In the case of drug laws, why should it be a law enforcement issue if someone wishes to kill off some brain cells, so long as no one else is threatened or harmed? So they may contribute less to society, plenty of people manage that just fine without drugs.

    As for gun laws, just owning and using it for normal purposes causes no harm, so there’s no interest to the government. The harms from the other uses are already covered by other laws (reckless endangerment, assault, the various criminal homicide statutes, etc.) Therefore any gun laws are purely redundant.

    1. I’m not sure it’s quite so broad as that.

      I know lots of people who are liberty minded, who are both pro-legalization and pro-gun. Most of these people are very unlikely to do drugs even if they were legalized, but support legalization anyway because of their pro-liberty ideals.


  5. Well, couldn’t it go the other way as well? Shaneen Allen’s safety – as well as the safety of every other American visiting New Jersey – was jeopardized by the state not just ignoring, but actively opposing, her 2nd Amendment rights, and the specific rights assured by and granted by Pennsylvania, which resulted in her disarmament, legal expenses and an arrest record.

    Seems to me states like NY, CA, NJ, D.C., et al, are in greater legal jeopardy than the states assuring their citizens’ rights.

  6. I think it would be just as easy for Texas or Virginia to Sue New York, New Jersey and “New” England states for not recognizing concealed carry licenses.

    1. And that would have easily obtained and readily proven proof of parties effected by state s not following federal law.

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