Law enforcement figures say Massachusetts will protect legal weed industry in face of federal threat
Several law enforcement figures in Massachusetts are saying the state will not participate in any federal crackdown on legal weed, after the Trump administration last week rescinded Obama-era protections which allowed the industry to flourish in state after state.
“We have a state law that we’re intending to enforce, and the state law was voted on by the people of Massachusetts,” Massachusetts Public Safety Secretary Daniel Bennett told The Boston Herald. “We have no intention of raiding a pot shop that is legal under state law.”
Boston Police Department spokesman Detective Lt. Michael McCarthy, meanwhile, told The Herald the state’s approach to a potential crackdown on its nascent, legal marijuana industry will mirror its approach to immigration.
“Similar to our position on immigration, the BPD will not actively enforce federal marijuana laws at the local level,” police spokesperson Detective Lt. Michael McCarthy told the Herald. “We will continue to enforce local drug laws to keep our neighborhoods safe.”
Polling indicates that Americans overwhelmingly oppose a new government war on cannabis.
A Quinnipiac poll of more than 1,000 voters, the results of which were published Thursday, showed 58 percent of people generally and 79 percent of people under 34 support legal recreational marijuana, while more than 90 percent support legal medical marijuana, and 70 percent oppose enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states that have legalized medical or recreational marijuana.
“The demographics say pot is here to stay, either for fun or to provide medical comfort,” Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, said. “And the message to Attorney General Jeff Sessions: Hands off.”
Comments from Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Andrew E. Lelling on Monday, irked Gov. Charlie Baker.
“What I would stress to him is the big public health crisis we’re dealing with in the Commonwealth these days is opioid addiction and street drugs