Three of the four marijuana-centered lawsuits filed against Colorado officials and businesses were organized and at least partially funded by out-of-state anti-drug organizations and socially conservative law firms, a Denver Post analysis shows.
Only one lawsuit, filed by the states of Nebraska and Oklahoma, appears to be entirely homegrown.
For those who oppose Colorado’s marijuana laws, the out-of-state money offers a chance to fight back against what they characterize as a well-heeled marijuana lobby that changed public opinion with misleading messages.
But supporters of the law that made the recreational use and sale of marijuana legal in Colorado say the money gives outsized influence to secretive coalitions of drug-rehab professionals, for-profit prison owners and others with a financial stake in keeping pot illegal.
The lawsuits, which make allegations of racketeering and claim that Colorado’s pot laws violate the U.S. Constitution, represent the opposition’s last-ditch effort to put the brakes on recreational marijuana legalization before five other states vote on the issue in November. [Read more at The Denver Post]