Remember Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer saying “For the state employees charged with administering the medical marijuana program or the Arizonans who intend to participate as consumers, it’s important that we receive court guidance as to whether they are at risk for federal prosecution.”
Remember her concluding those official remarks by saying, “The State of Arizona has worked to follow the wishes of voters. But I won’t stand aside while state employees and average Arizonans acting in good faith are unwittingly put at risk. In light of the explicit warnings on this issue offered by Arizona’s U.S. Attorney, as well as many other federal prosecutors, clarity and judicial direction are in order.”
We sure do. What we don’t remember is any direct threat to state employees by the US Attorney for Arizona Dennis Burke… and neither does he!
(Yuma Sun) PHOENIX — The top federal prosecutor in Arizona said Gov. Jan Brewer and Attorney General Tom Horne are distorting the facts on the issue of medical marijuana and risks of federal prosecution of state workers.
Burke, in an interview with Capitol Media Services, said his letter simply spelled out the priorities his office has in going after those who sell, transport or use marijuana. More to the point, he said that letter never mentioned state workers.
“It’s fair to read into my letter what I included and what I didn’t,” he said. “And if I didn’t include state employees, I think that’s telling in itself.”
Gubernatorial press aide Matthew Benson said his boss does not believe that silence means state workers have nothing to fear.
“If that’s what he meant, why didn’t he say that?” Benson asked.
But Burke said there was a simple way of dealing with the question.
“You would think that a letter back from Attorney General Horne, as opposed to ‘I’m going to file a lawsuit and have a press conference’ might have been a better course of action,” he said.
Benson conceded that Burke’s letter never mentions state workers.
What Gov. Brewer was reacting to was the threat letters in Washington State over its proposed dispensary system. So, a different state, different US Attorney, different governor, and a completely different law where the state employees would have had greater exposure to prosecution. Sure, Gov. Brewer, you’re no trying to thwart the will of the people… you’re just scared of threats a thousand miles away over some other law.