Tom Horne Denied Extra-Long Court Filing in Federal Medical Marijuana Lawsuit

Categories: Medical Weed

horne500.jpg
Tom Horne, Arizona Attorney General, says if Arizona US Attorney Dennis Burke wants to give comfort to state workers adminstering the medical marijuana program, he should put it in writing.

Give me the short version, a federal judge told Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne today in a ruling on the state's lawsuit against medical marijuana.

Yesterday, Horne had asked U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton if he could exceed the 17-page limit for his arguments on why the lawsuit shouldn't be dismissed. He even included the proposed response in a separate, 23-page filing. (See below). The extra pages were needed, Horne wrote in the request, "to thoroughly and accurate address each claim" being made in the defendants' motion to dismiss.

But Bolton, as strict as any editor we've had, denied the request. We can sympathize, finding the old maxim true that it's often tougher to write something short and concise.

Skimming through Horne's proposed response, though, we noticed a couple of things that should actually be added.

For instance, in giving the run-down on how Arizona officials ended up suing their own state instead of defending a voter-approve state law, there's no mention of the January meeting between Horne and the law's most vocal opponent, Carolyn Short of Keep AZ Drug Free.

We also think Horne's proposed motion should have mentioned that Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke reminded the public, through a reporter, that his May 2 letter to the state about the new law didn't threaten state workers with prosecution.

"It's fair to read into my letter what I included and what I didn't,'' Burke told reporter Howie Fischer. "And if I didn't include state employees, I think that's telling in itself.'

Burke's point was that it was disingenuous for the state to now claim the state workers faced a risk of prosecution.

Horne tells us that maybe his revised motion will include that quote from Burke -- because it may help his side.

"It sounds like he left it out for the reason that he wanted to leave open the possibility for prosecuting state employees," Horne says.

Judging from the context of Fischer's story, Burke meant it the other way. After all, he told the Arizona Republic that, ""We have no intention of targeting or going after people who are implementing or who are in compliance with state law ... but at the same time, they can't be under the impression that they have immunity, amnesty or safe haven."

But Horne's got a point: Burke could have been more specific in his letter about the lack of a risk to state workers.

We e-mailed Burke today to ask whether he felt his verbal statements had less legal weight than his letter.

Horne says, and it's hard to disagree, that it's always better to get something in writing.

But in this case, it's simply hard to imagine that Burke would prosecute state Department of Health Services Director Will Humble or his employees after stating explicitly that he has no intention of going after them for implementing the law. And even if the Obama Administration gets voted out next year and Dennis Burke gets replaced with an anti-pot crusader, it's unrealistic to think the new regime wouldn't give the state fair warning to stop administering the program.

Horne won't give in when we ask to him if he honestly believes the feds would prosecute Humble or his underlings, stating that he's seen the federal government do some "outrageous" things. (We reminded him that the same could be said for state government.)

In any case, Horne says the next motion he files will be probably be better because it's shorter.


Pot Response by Horne

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20 comments
Bill Thacker
Bill Thacker

Tom Horne does what Tom Horne wants. He wants to pick and choose laws that best suit him and his cronies. I am sure he just waiting for a payoff to come help him make up his mind. Like he did attacking TUSD teachers with accents. But left the chain of Sonoran Science Academy alone. They fruadly use H!-B visas to hire teachers from Turkey but Tom thought that was alright because of the money they gave him. A charter school is a public school but Tom ignores his own law. He attacks and fire teachers at will and is responcible for closing more than nine public schools. He attacks the ethnic studies program and again Sonoran Science can there keep there Turkish indoctrination programs. Good Tom, pick and choose what you want to hear. Stall long enough one of those lobbyists will give you a bonus.

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moncler145

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Youssef
Youssef

This is a joke, Horne knows damn well no one is getting prosecuted. He's just trying to take a dump on a law he doesn't agree with. Nice to know one mans opinion means more then hundreds of thousands who vote. 

concernedparentandtaxpayer
concernedparentandtaxpayer

Jesus said to do unto others as we would have them to do unto us. None of us would want our child thrown in jail with the sexual predators over marijuana. None of us would want to see an older family member’s home confiscated and sold by the police for growing a couple of marijuana plants for their aches and pains. It’s time to stop putting our own family members in jail over marijuana.   If ordinary Americans could grow a little marijuana in their own back yards, it would be about as valuable as home-grown tomatoes. Let's put the criminals out of business and get them out of our neighborhoods. Let's let ordinary Americans grow a little marijuana in their own back yards.   Here's one way that IT IS REALLY WORKING: Arresting the criminals and collecting a fee from registered growers (and bringing in thousands of dollars to support the county budget); what a great plan! This is the way to build a better America! http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/...   The current proposal before Congress, bill HR 2306, will allow states to decide how they will regulate marijuana. Email your Congressperson and Senators at http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Ele... and ask them to sign on as a CO-SPONSOR of HR 2306.And a big THANK YOU to the courageous, freedom loving legislators, governors, and countless others who are working so hard to bring this through! You’re doing a great patriotic service for all of America!

concernedparentandtaxpayer
concernedparentandtaxpayer

Ms. Brewer's actions and those of her AG, Mr. Horne, are consistent with her close ties tothe private, for-profit prison industry (the people who want to lock up yourkids so that they can keep on making a buck): Here's some info from Wikipedia,and a link to the underlying story:

“The Brewer administration has also been investigated by KPHO for hiring ChuckCoughlin and Paul Senseman, both lobbyists for Corrections Corporation ofAmerica, as a policy advisor and communications director.[39] Although Coughlincontinues work as both a lobbyist and policy advisor, Senseman no longer doeswork for CCA. CCA operates six private, for-profit prisons in Arizona.[40] ”.Here’s the KPHO story, including a description of tens of thousands of dollarsin campaign money from Corrections Corporation. http://www.kpho.com/news/24834...So Ms. Brewer is working to keep marijuana illegal and is at the same timehiring staff from a very large, for-profit prison corporation and takingcampaign money from them. The AZ campaign finance site is at http://www.azsos.gov/cfs/Campa...but it’s not working for me; can anybody go in and see how much Ms. Brewer hastaken from the prison industry? Is that really the government that we want… runby the prison companies? Is there someone in AZ that could get this info intothe public arena?

 

Note that Ms. Brewer says she is trying to make sure noArizona citizen unwittingly breaks Federal law (in which case they could end upin Federal prison). Does she prefer to keep marijuana illegal under Arizonalaw, so that people who use it can be sent to an Arizona prison (run by hercampaign contributor, Corrections Corporation of America)? 

concernedparentandtaxpayer
concernedparentandtaxpayer

Jesus said to do unto others as we would have them to do unto us. None of us would want our child thrown in jail with the sexual predators over marijuana. None of us would want to see an older family member’s home confiscated and sold by the police for growing a couple of marijuana plants for their aches and pains. It’s time to stop putting our own family members in jail over marijuana.   If ordinary Americans could grow a little marijuana in their own back yards, it would be about as valuable as home-grown tomatoes. Let's put the criminals out of business and get them out of our neighborhoods. Let's let ordinary Americans grow a little marijuana in their own back yards.   Here's one way that IT IS REALLY WORKING: Arresting the criminals and collecting a fee from registered growers (and bringing in thousands of dollars to support the county budget); what a great plan! This is the way to build a better America! http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/...   The current proposal before Congress, bill HR 2306, will allow states to decide how they will regulate marijuana. Email your Congressperson and Senators at http://www.usa.gov/Contact/Ele... and ask them to sign on as a CO-SPONSOR of HR 2306.And a big THANK YOU to the courageous, freedom loving legislators, governors, and countless others who are working so hard to bring this through! You’re doing a great patriotic service for all of America! 

Joel Z Williams
Joel Z Williams

page 20, lines 1-4 of the response says it all!  The plaintiff (Horne) is admitting that the federal government has NEVER sought criminal prosecution of state employees who were simply implementing the law that voters demanded at the polls. 

This lawsuit is essentially a Fabian tactic. It was designed to stall the marijuana supporters into an expensive legal battle in which they will stand to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees, while Horne brings his entire office to bear against the marijuana lobby  at taxpayer's expense. ( the AG is effectively the largest law firm in the state).

Arizona Dispense
Arizona Dispense

"That silence .... speaks volumes" - Arizona to the Federal judge. Silence is a presumption of intent to prosecute by Dennis Burke according to Tom Horne.  If those are on his thoughts on silence, how does he feel about Miranda rights?

Pit Boss
Pit Boss

That Carolyn Short chick must give one hell of a good blow job. This guy is doing everything he can to keep her happy at this point.

Trommy Themulus
Trommy Themulus

Biddy you may want to go in for help.  There seems to be something going around the govt. offices downtown that affects everyone in charge.  I hope they find a cure for it soon cause it's making our state/county govt. the laughing stock of the USA.

DM
DM

Whats the answer to 99 out of 100 questions?  MONEY.  Translated in this case as campaign contributions.   http://bit.ly/dDueBa

She's in the CCA's pocket, and how do these private prisons make money?  Housing "criminals" found in possession of marijuana and without "papers".  Its that easy.  They put her in office, now its time to get paid. 

Follow the bouncing ball.  If dispensaries are licensed, the illegal marijuana trade dries up. Violent crime drops, Mexico finds new pipelines for their imports, the real "illegal" criminals go elsewhere.  This equals less federal funding for border enforcement, a decrease in criminals for private prisons, and the bottom line gets hurt.

Basic politics at play.

If you don't buy it, consider that 16 states now have medical marijuana laws, and not one state employee has ever been prosecuted. 

Duncan20903
Duncan20903

Why has nobody mentioned that the United States of America joined the ACLU and the medicinal cannabis patient's advocates and told Governor Brewer to piss of and do her job, which is to implement the law and to quit making excuses. I really thought that event a rather surprising turn of events but it just doesn't seem like anyone cares. Me? I never thought I'd see the day.-------- -------- -------- -------- --------

In order for there to be an arrest and conviction of a State's employees for performing administrative duties will take, at minimum,  a trip to the SCOTUS to reverse the ruling in County of San Diego v San Diego NORML, 165 Cal.App.4th 798; 81 Cal.Rptr.3d 461 (2008) and is also likely to require that Congress actually vote in a law making purely administrative duties pursuant to implementing and enforcing a valid State law. It just isn't against the law to make a list of people's names.

The really, really ironic thing about this (manufactured) controversy is that the stuff that people are so worried that would get State employees arrested is just is not a violation of Federal law.  If the State of Washington were to actually pass the law proposed earlier this year to re-legalize cannabis and to establish a retail distribution chain in the State run liquor stores, now that would actually have State employees committing Federal crimes.

http://iowamedicalmarijuana.or...

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Miki Miki
Miki Miki

Way to stand up for the voters,you republican piece of shit!

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

Horne is attempting to make what might be called an 'educated' attempt. Thus, he can always (and will) blame it on the 'court', instead of simply saying, "We chose to follow the law as established by the majority of voters in this state".

It's time for Mrs. Brewer and Mr. Horne to stop wasting taxpayer supported resources on a law that has been approved by the voters.

I will guess they will fight rubberized asphalt next.

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

Good point Tommy.  Rubberized asphalt makes tires last longer which delays tire replacement and results in less money in the AZ economy and less people hired to replace tires.  Getting rid of Rub Asph is a jobs bill!

Walter Concrete
Walter Concrete

Thanks for supporting the citizens of Arizona, Atty General Horne.   Anytime we vote for something our masters tell us how stupid we are and then spend more of our money by suing themselves.   Yep, they sure are bright bulbs, our masters are, always looking out for us because we don't really know what we want being all stupid and such.

Coz
Coz

They just won't quit until they piss all over the will of the voters.Amazing how idiots like Tommy Horne Dog get voted into office.

Jason
Jason

Tom Horne is really quite delusional.

Does he really think that Burke will actually prosecute Humble and/or any state health employees?

I think Burke was quite clear that there was no intention of targeting state employees.

Yet another good reason to insure Horne is booted out...

Marcy
Marcy

Tom Horney isn't the brightest person but he isn't delusional, he's just lying to the judge because he knows state employees wouldn't be prosecuted any more than state employees were prosecuted for selling pot tax stamps.

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