On March 14, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously rejected (3-0) an appeal by medical marijuana patient Angel Raich, ruling that the 10th amendment does not protect her right to use medical marijuana and that there is no constitutional right to use marijuana to treat pain and suffering. MAPS and MPP submitted an amicus curiae brieffor the appeal, as well as for Raich’s previous cases, detailing the federal government’s obstruction of medical marijuana research. Raich, a mother of two, uses marijuana to treat severe chronic pain, an inoperable brain tumor, wasting syndrome, and seizures. With Raich’s appeal lost, one more potential door to federally-legal medical marijuana is firmly shut, making the route through FDA even more necessary than before.
Prof. Randy Barnett, Raich’s lawyer and a professor at Georgetown University Law Center, published a thorough op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. The San Francisco Chronicle also published a candid op-ed, “The laws against marijuana are stupid”.