Minnesota law enforcement's last word on pot: "We do not support legalization for any purpose"

The police don't like pot in any way, shape or form, and in Dayton's Minnesota, that's what matters.
The police don't like pot in any way, shape or form, and in Dayton's Minnesota, that's what matters.
Image by Tatiana Craine

Mark Dayton says he won't sign a bill relaxing Minnesota's marijuana laws unless it has the support of law enforcement.

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That raises the question -- could law enforcement leaders ever be persuaded to support something like that? According to a new report in The Daily Chronic, the answer to that question, at least for now, is a resounding no.

Dennis Flaherty, executive director of the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association, told the Chronic, "Our position is unchanged. We do not support the legalization of marijuana for any purpose."

"It's illegal on the federal level and we're not going to support any legislation that would put us in conflict with... federal law," he added.

Why are cops so intent to make sure Minnesota passes on medicine and recreational grass? From the Chronic's report:

Law enforcement leaders say marijuana is an addictive gateway drug that is associated with violent crime and can lead to use of other illicit drugs. They also say states that have legalized marijuana have enforcement problems. They point to California, where federal authorities are cracking down on dispensaries. Flaherty says anyone there can get a buyer's card for just about any reason.

Given that Dayton has no interest in flouting law enforcement's recommendation when it comes to pot (he's shown a propensity to agree with cops' view about other controversial issues as well), it looks like the only hope for legal medical or recreational marijuana in Minnesota in the short-term is for the feds to take action -- and that ain't happening anytime soon.

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