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December 01, 2004

National Review dings Bush on medical marijuana

In a first, I'm basing a post on a link from National Review Online that I actually agree with. When the NRO calls the Bush administration on its mad power grabs, you know it's bad.

From the earliest days of the Republic, the Supreme Court has emphasized that the Constitution creates a federal government of "limited and enumerated powers." There is no federal "police power" authorizing Congress to cure every injustice or right every wrong. Rather, the federal government was entrusted with those limited and discrete powers necessary for national cohesion. Matters of truly national import -- matters that cannot be handled by state and local governments acting alone or in concert -- are entrusted to the federal government. As made explicit in the Constitution's texts, all others powers remain in the hands of the states and the people.

Despite its apparent importance to drug warriors, Ashcroft v. Raich is not about medical marijuana or drug prohibition. Nor is it about the wisdom, or lack thereof, of allowing chronically ill individuals to smoke weed for medicinal purposes. Rather, it concerns the limits of federal power under the Constitution. Federalism does not play favorites. It limits the scope of federal power to pursue liberal and conservative ends alike. If a majority of the Court remembers this lesson, Angel Raich will get to keep her medicine. More important, the nation will keep the constitutional limits on federal power.

It's a very good article-- read it if you can avoid looking at the banner ads alongside it. Gads!

Posted by jay at December 1, 2004 11:03 AM | TrackBack
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