The California Attorney General has issued a strange and interesting set of “guidelines” (pdf) around medical marijuana, a document whose legal significance would seem to be totally unclear. These guidelines are actually required by statute (H&S 11362.81
The most striking thing about this announcement, from my point of view, is its seeming disregard for the way California government works. The Attorney General is not the legislature, and does not have the power to re-write the Health and Safety Code to mean whatever it would like it to mean. In other words, even though the AG states on page 6 that “Qualified patients claiming protection under Proposition 215 may possess an amount of marijuana that is ‘reasonably related to their current medical needs’ ” that assertion is simply not the law of California at the moment. At least, it’s not the law as it’s actually enforced by police and prosecuted by district attorneys. Rather, it seems to be what the AG would like the law to be.
The guideline also suggests on page seven that non-
Meanwhile, on the basis of this very same “totality of the circumstances” test, the AG says that an officer can also make a determination that a non-
Totally bizarre. I think the intentions behind this document are basically good. But, uh, there’s this little thing called separation of powers. If the Attorney General can rewrite the law at