Legal marijuana in America is now estimated to be a $1.43 billion industry. And it’s expected to grow to $2.34 billion in 2014. If those numbers hold, the 64 percent increase – a steeper trend line than global smartphone sales – would make pot one of the world’s fastest-growing business sectors.
The federal government was sued Oct. 27 for its recent crackdown on medical marijuana dispensaries in California, described as an “unlawful assault on state sovereignty.”
Americans for Safe Access, with 20,000 members in the state, cited the 10th Amendment in their lawsuit, which names U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and Melina Haag, the U.S. attorney for Northern California, as defendants and was filed in San Francisco.
The 10th Amendment gives legislative authority to states when such authority is not explicitly reserved for the federal government.
The advocacy group said government officials overstepped their constitutional authority by not respecting the way local officials regulate marijuana, the Associated Press reported.
“By directly interfering with the legislative function of the state, they force the state to criminalize activities they do not want to criminalize,” Joe Elford, chief counsel for Americans for Safe Access, said, according to AP.
In early October, federal prosecutors announced a crackdown on medical marijuana dispensaries in California, where medicinal marijuana is legal.