Montana federal prosecutor warns of dangers of pot legalization earlier than vote
By Sarah N. Lynch
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Montana’s high federal prosecutor is urging voters to tread slightly earlier than balloting to legalize leisure marijuana, taking the irregular step of leaping valid into a political debate a few pollinitiative in the weeks earlier than the election.
In an op-ed published in numerous newspapers in recent days and posted on the Justice Division’s internet page on Monday, U.S. Legal official Kurt Alme instructed voters they must detached “review intimately” a pair of pollinitiatives that will presumably perhaps legalize cannabis for adults ages 21 and older, warning that marijuana is addictive, may possibly presumably presumably result in additional site visitors accidents and can also “develop bigger the possibility of severe complications from COVID-19.”
Smoking, whether marijuana or tobacco, may possibly presumably presumably develop bigger possibility of severe COVID-19 ensuing from doable for lung irritation.
Montana is actually appropriate one of 5 states this November balloting on eight initiatives to legalize marijuana for scientific or leisure utilize. Dozen of diversified states possess already legalized the drug, though marijuana remains unlawful under federal law.
Though used Legal official Identical old Jeff Classes in 2018 rescinded an Obama administration policy that had eased enforcement of federal marijuana regulations in states that legalized the drug, cannabis experts speak federal prosecutors possess largely since left marijuana agencies alone so long as they complied with mumble regulations.
The Justice Division has increasingly attain under scrutiny for some of its messaging earlier than the 2020 election, with Legal official Identical old William Barr repeating claims by President Donald Trump, without proof, that there may possibly presumably presumably very successfully be stylish fraud with mail-in ballots.
Some used prosecutors acknowledged they felt Alme’s decision to weigh in on a mumble pollsearch details from earlier than the election may possibly presumably presumably possess crossed the line.
“It’s a long way extremely irregular and rotten for a U.S. Legal official to weigh in on political questions,” acknowledged Barbara McQuade, a used U.S. Legal official for the Jap District of Michigan.
William Nettles, the used U.S. Legal official for the District of South Carolina, agreed, calling it “an abuse of authority” and “atypical behavior.”
A spokeswoman for Alme’s situation of job, Clair Johnson Howard, acknowledged in an announcement to Reuters that the op-ed “became supposed to educate voters on a build that an excellent deal impacts the enforcement of federal legal law and is a topic about which U.S. Legal official’s Offices possess basic details.”
(Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Enhancing by Invoice Berkrot and Sonya Hepinstall)