The acting commander-in-chief of the United States, Donald Trump, has recently invoked the ire of an unlikely demographic, his own supporters. Appointed under the Trump administration, the 84th Attorney General of the United States Jeff Sessions, has been a longstanding opponent to pro-marijuana legislation, which has been a major concern of many in or hoping to get into the cannabis industry. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer recently spoke out on the Trump administration’s plan to crack down on states that have implemented recreational marijuana legislation.
Supporters of the Constitution’s 10th amendment (which restricts the federal government’s power over the states), from both the left and right sides, have recently spoken out in objection to the notion of the federal government having a say in the legislature of individual states. Reason for the opposition range widely, from out of support of the massive tax revenue generated by recreational marijuana, to the crippling of drug trafficking as a result of the regulation of cannabis. The discontent with the situation has even reached individuals who oppose the legalization of marijuana, whether it be on medical or recreational level; some voicing their displeasure with the threat of government interference in state legislature, some believing antagonizing the legalization of recreational to be an outright waste of time. Further outrage sparked over the clear contradiction such a venture would be to previous statements Trump has made in regard to marijuana legislation, “I think it should be a state issue” he said on the matter during an interview with the Washington Post in October of 2015.
This ordeal will likely cause more commotion should the Trump administration actually go through with cracking down on recreational marijuana legislature, in a country where support for the legalization of marijuana increases with each passing year. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer publically mentioned Trump’s support for medical marijuana, going on to more or less assure that medical marijuana is not under threat, but that recreational marijuana is a different deal entirely. Even more unnerving was the fact that during United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmation, he vowed he “won’t commit to not enforcing federal laws”, which sounds grim for the future of the recreational cannabis industry under the Trump administration.
In our opinion, it would be a political disaster for Trump, should he allow this federal intervention to take place. As a candidate who consistently promised to uphold states rights, in addition to the majority of US citizens now supporting marijuana legalization, going against his word at this point could be catastrophic for his short political career. However, with the current presidential cabinet consisting of who it does, it is not too extreme a belief to think Trump may do just that. Should this happen, outcomes could be dismal for states wherein cannabis has become an integral part of the economy, namely, Colorado. Applying a federal level vice grip could lead to the stymieing of the legal marijuana market, and thus, the actions of the Trump administration in regard to this topic should be monitored with closely.