Votes making Colorado and Washington the first US states to legalise marijuana for recreational use could be short-lived victories if the federal government decides to challenge them. In Colorado, Amendment 64 garnered nearly 53 percent of the vote, allowing its supporters to declare victory.
The US Department of Justice says its enforcement of controlled substances will remain unchanged, but even opponents of the measure say it is time for the government to look at decriminalising cannabis.
“I think at the very minimum, we should work aggressively to decriminalise it, make sure kids don’t get felony records. I mean the voters were pretty clear about what they want and how they feel. So, within the limits of federal law, or whatever federal government will permit, we have to figure out how we are going to go forward,” said Colorado Governor, John Hickenlooper, who voted against the amendment.
In Washington state, political leaders have also spoken out against the measure but pro-cannabis campaigners say the result of the vote must now be respected.
“Today the state of Washington looked at 75 years of a national marijuana prohibition and said, it’s time for a new approach,” said Alison Holcomb, campaign director for New Approach Washington.
The Obama administration is expected to file a federal lawsuit to challenge and block aspects of state-level legalisation measures but it’s unlikely to be strong enough to stop people possessing an ounce (28.5 grams) or less of the drug without risk of arrest by local police.
- 1Berlusconi linked with a shock return to government – in Russia!
- 2French actor Gérard Depardieu ‘a threat to Ukraine national security’
- 3Nasa announces the discovery of an earth-like planet
- 4Bobbi Kristina Brown, Whitney Houston’s daughter, dies
- 5Coach has its roof sheared off in low tunnel near Lille
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Russia unveils ‘straight’ flag, internet responds
- 3Seven reasons why Yanis Varoufakis is now a political legend
- 4Greek crisis: ‘Agreement reached’ after marathon talks
- 5International news | euronews, latest international news
- 6Nasa announces the discovery of an earth-like planet
- 7[LIVE UPDATES] Greek debt deadline looms
- 8Is Saudi Arabia outlawing rainbows for being gay?
- 9Pluto: New Horizons space probe provides closest-ever pictures
- 10French actor Gérard Depardieu ‘a threat to Ukraine national security’
- 11Latest News Bulletin
- 12International breaking news | euronews online world breaking news in video
- 13BREAKING: Formal nuclear deal reached with Iran, says diplomat
- 14Greece votes ‘No’ in overwhelming rejection of bailout proposals
- 15Berlusconi linked with a shock return to government – in Russia!
- 16At least 10 dead in explosion in Turkish town close to border with Syria
- 17Greece clinches deal with eurogroup after marathon talks
- 18‘Imposed’ bailout deal must be implemented, says Greek PM
- 19Israel angry as Iran and West talk up nuclear deal
- 20Varoufakis resigns after Greek referendum
Wires > News
- 05:39 CET China watchdog says graft risk controls tightened at central bank
- 04:35 CET Authorities study plane debris found off Madagascar for links to…
- 04:27 CET Zimbabwean charged over killing of Cecil the lion
- 04:26 CET India hangs man convicted of 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts
- 02:30 CET U.S. says Europeans could help more in South China Sea dispute
- 02:01 CET Israel approves new homes in settlement after demolishing two…
- 00:49 CET Afghanistan says Taliban leader dead, urges peace talks
- 00:14 CET Top U.S. general says Iran deal lowers near-term atomic arms risk