I’m worried that Gov. Brewer might be losing her memory. You know what they say, “As you get older three things happen. The first is your memory goes, what's the other two?” Or maybe she just doesn’t chose to remember. She made a statement Wednesday that if the Police Chiefs in AZ had come out stronger against medical marijuana it would not have passed. That’s not the way I remember it.
Arizona might not have a medical marijuana law today had police chiefs spoken out against it, Gov. Jan Brewer said Wednesday.
But she conceded later that perhaps she was guilty of the same neglect.
Speaking to the annual conference of the Arizona Chiefs of Police here, the governor chided the chiefs for what she said was their silence on Proposition 203 when it was being debated before the November election. The measure allows individuals with a doctor’s recommendation to buy marijuana and state-licensed dispensaries to legally sell the drug.
It was approved by a margin of just 4,340 votes out of more than 1.7 million ballots cast.
“I believe we all have a duty to speak with a unified voice on irresponsible ballot measures that jeopardize public safety,” the governor told the chiefs.
“Proposition 203 ... is a good example where a unified voice might have prevented passage of this dreadful situation,” she continued. “So now, here we are.”
Yep. Here we are with you still trying to fight the will of the voters. Why don’t you defend this law like you do SB 1070? But as for your revisionist history let’s take a little walk down memory lane.
The chiefs' association did take a public position against the measure, as did various county attorneys and sheriffs. But there was little organized opposition to the well-funded campaign.
Viewpoint: State's sheriffs against Prop 203 - 1st step to legalize marijuana
By YCSO Sheriff Steve Waugh (and sheriffs from all the 14 other counties)
Special to the Review
Arizona's sheriffs, known nation-wide for taking strong action to maintain law and order, have come together to take a stand against Prop 203 in Arizona. Prop 203 seeks to legalize marijuana for allegedly medical purposes. Similar propositions have passed in other states with disastrous results. Instead of being a controlled form of medicine, marijuana floods the state that legalizes it and becomes readily available through grow-houses and independent distributors.
We urge the voters of Arizona to vote "No" on Prop 203. As law enforcement officers, our mission is to keep our state as safe as possible. Prop 203 would endanger the good people of Arizona by increasing the amount of illegal drugs in our state. We believe Prop 203 will lead to increased crime and vehicle accidents and will drain the resources of law enforcement agencies.
It comes as no surprise that one of Arizona’s most infamous figure heads, Sheriff Joe Arpaio is coming out against Prop 203, the proposition to legalize medical marijuana in Arizona.
Two of the state’s political heavyweights, Senator Russell Pearce and Sheriff Joe Arpaio, have come out against Prop 203, calling the medical label just a facade.
“This is dangerous, this is absolutely frightening. If you understand what’s going on here,” said Pearce. “This is about the legalization of drugs and has nothing to do with any medical need.”
In an unprecedented show of unity, all 30 of Arizona’s elected county sheriffs and county attorneys from across the state have come together to take a stand against Proposition 203 in Arizona. Prop 203 seeks to legalize marijuana for “medical purposes.” As Arizona’s elected leaders in public safety, we have done the research and we urge voters to vote “no” on proposition 203.
U.S. Sens. John McCain and Jon Kyl led a group of Republican officials Wednesday denouncing a ballot measure that would allow medical marijuana.
“Marijuana for medical treatment is the foot in the door for legalization,” Kyl said at a news conference opposing Proposition 203.
McCain, who is running for a fifth term, pointed out that the medical community has declined to back medical marijuana.
“We obviously have great sympathy for those who struggle in pain or discomfort from debilitating diseases and medical conditions,” McCain said, “but this proposition is not the solution.”
Brewer Speaks Out Against Medical Marijuana
The reasons that Governor Brewer stated she was against medical marijuana in her state is that she feels the campaign amounted to a backdoor legalization of marijuana, and warned that dispensaries would overwhelm communities and become magnets for crime. At the conference she said, “I am fearful of the additional societal costs we will incur if voters were to pass this proposition, “ and, ”I ask my fellow Arizonans not to be bullied into believing this is about compassion for sick people.”
That’s how I remember it. I remember Brewer, Pearce, Arpaio, all the Sheriff’s and county attorneys and our state senators fighting hard to defeat medical marijuana. They wanted voters “not to be bullied into believing in this compassion for sick people”, as Gov. Brewer put it. Compassion for sick people is just not right in their minds.
In the end it passed by a little over four thousand votes after days of counting. I told a friend after a couple of days of counting that it would pass by about four thousand votes, and I was right. He was shocked that I was so right on in my prediction, but it was based on knowing which counties still had to be counted and how the votes were breaking on the issue. And It was based on the fact that we had already passed medical marijuana before in our state and our dear legislators decided we didn’t know what we were doing and overturned the will of the people. We had to pass a special referendum to keep them from doing that again.
This is not the first time the state's lawmakers went against the will of the people regarding medical marijuana. In 1996, voters passed Arizona's first medical marijuana measure – Proposition 200 – by a 2-1 vote, but the State Legislature was able to stop it from being implemented. Two years later, the Voter Protection Act was passed, and that prohibits state legislators from changing a voter-approved initiative without a three-quarter supermajority.
Brewer and Arpaio are still fighting the results. Brewer by suing the Feds and refusing to open dispensaries. Arpaio by setting up a special task force to go after medical marijuana users. And the Gilbert police department has already raided and arrested approved medical marijuana patients. Why do they ignore the laws they don’t like?
Brewer attempts to thwart medical marijuana law
By Jon Johnson
Published on Friday, May 27, 2011 12:00 PM MST
If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.
That appears to be Arizona Governor Jan Brewer's mantra in her efforts to suppress voter-approved Proposition 203 – otherwise known as the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act.
Brewer, who openly campaigned against passage of the act, announced Tuesday that she directed Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne to file suit by the end of the week to seek a declaratory judgment from a federal court regarding the legality of Arizona's new medical marijuana law.
In her press release, Brewer said she is ordering the lawsuit to protect state employees who are charged with issuing medical marijuana patient cards and dispensary licenses and questions the Arizona Department of Public Safety's ability to maintain federal grant monies due to the law. Brewer cites a letter from United States Attorney for the District of Arizona Dennis Burke to Arizona Department of Health Services Director Will Humble on May 2 as the reasoning she is seeking clarification from a federal court.
Arpaio on Wednesday announced the formation of a special unit targeting people who violate the state laws, claiming he “wanted to be prepared for criminals who believe that Proposition 203 will allow them to deal marijuana with impunity,” reports Deborah Stocks at ABC 15.
One of the defining moments of the latest war on medical marijuana in Arizona came last month when Gilbert SWAT officers raided the home of a patient suspected of having a single ounce of weed.
Garry Ferguson vowed to continue helping patients obtain medical marijuana after his Tempe "business" was raided by Gilbert police on June 16.
In the latest sign that Gilbert police have gone rogue, a medical-marijuana patient tells New Times that he was taken to jail two nights ago for possessing a half-ounce of weed.
This is the third case we've heard about in the past week in which Gilbert officers allegedly told patients that the voter-approved medical-marijuana law provides no meaningful protection.
Not only did the officers write up the man for possible possession charge -- he says they're accusing him of DUI because he admitted he'd smoked pot that morning. If true, that seems like one DUI case that'll never stick.
AZ medical marijuana law is one of the strictest in the nation that has passed.
Under Proposition 203, Arizona requires patients obtain a prescription from a licensed doctor, another problem. Doctors are often reticent to prescribe MMJ for fear of disciplinary action because MMJ is not on a list of FDA approved medications. Other states only require a recommendation, not a prescription.
Arizona law enforcement must respect the law. However, they likely will insist on strict adherence. A person who falls outside of the statutes, even by accident, is subject to severe criminal penalties including years in prison.
Meanwhile, persons who are sick with cancer, AIDS and some other ailments say MMJ gives them relief they are unable to find with traditional medication. They anxiously await for the clinics to open.
For the facts about the new medical marijuana law and to protect yourself in the face of police departments who are going rogue, you can review the pertinent information here.
Governor Jan Brewer followed through today on her threat to attack Arizona's voter-approved medical marijuana law, but advocates of democracy are fighting back.
Numerous defendants have signed on to oppose Brewer's suit, including the backers of Prop 203, the Arizona Medical Marijuana Association. The American Civil Liberties Union will cover the legal defense for the AzMMA, according to a news release just sent out (see below).
Thank you Arizona Medical Marijuana Association and The American Civil Liberties Union for defending us. I mean that too, from the bottom of my heart. Someone has to.
I have Degenerative disk disease all through my spine from top to bottom, which has progressed through the last twenty years making it almost impossible for me to do things that others take for granted. Like sitting up, driving and walking. I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and Raynauds. I also had Hepatitis B which makes it impossible for me to take biologicals, NSAIDS and more than two pain pills a day which does not cut it. As far as I’m concerned Medical Marijuana was made for people like me. I just got approved for a medical marijuana card. I have lost all of my former life I used to love. Now I have a keyboard and I’m using it to help Brewer remember. My body may fail me, but I still have a memory. Now I just wish Gov. Brewer and Pearce and Arpaio and all the sheriffs would defend the will of the people in this state who passed the law like they do their anti immigrant legislation. I guess not only is their memory selective but so is their support for the laws in our state.