Marijuana: THC driving bill recommended by A64 task force "95 percent bad," attorney says

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As our Melanie Asmar reported, the Amendment 64 Task Force backed passage of a marijuana DUI bill during a meeting earlier this month. The current legislation tweaks a version that's failed each of the past two years, incorporating a suggestion that marijuana attorney Rob Corry floated last year. Does that mean Corry supports the current measure? In a word, no.

Some background: As we've reported, Representative Claire Levy sponsored a bill in 2011 that would have established THC intoxication at five nanograms per milliliter of blood. Levy later decided this standard was too strict, and suggested that an 8 nanogram limit be substituted, but she didn't win the argument. The five nanogram version subsequently passed the Colorado House.

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William Breathes's blood draw.
But following a report that Westword medical marijuana critic William Breathes's blood had tested at nearly three times the legal amount while sober, the aforementioned senate judiciary committee shelved the proposal pending future study, and an attempt to resurrect it again in May failed.

Months later, a divided DUID-marijuana working group failed to come to a consensus, with half the members in favor of a per se limit -- meaning that a test registering five nanograms or more would be seen as irrefutable proof of intoxication -- and the other half maintaining that unlike alcohol, THC tends to linger in users for longer periods of time, making it next to impossible to determine actual impairment via a blood test, at least under currently available technology.

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Steve King.
Nonetheless, Senator Steve King introduced the bill again in 2012, and after being revived for a special session, it seemed a lock to pass. Instead, it fell one vote short, because Senator Nancy Spence was in California for her grandson's birthday.

Cut to this past December, when another pair of legislators took the bill out of mothballs again, but this time with a difference. Rather than a per se limit, a so-called "permissible inference" defense would be allowed. As William Breathes wrote, a test above five nanograms wouldn't automatically infer guilt: "If...other evidence indicated he was not impaired, the jury could find in favor of the defendant."

In February 2012, Corry made a pitch for this same approach using an equivalent term -- "rebuttable presumption." In an open letter the legislators, he wrote:

If the bill cannot be voted down at this stage, at the very least, there should be an amendment that makes the five nanogram level a rebuttable presumption, and gives drivers an affirmative defense to demonstrate to a jury or judge that they were not impaired.
Nonetheless, Corry says, "I don't support the current bill."

Why not? "If the per se bill was 100 percent bad," he allows, "this one is 95 percent bad."

Continue to read more about the latest THC driving bill.


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76 comments
11er
11er

I say if you can't remember CHEECH'S partner in crime then you are too high to drive........

Stephan Reuchlein
Stephan Reuchlein

The argument that you can still function at these levels does not fly. How would you like it if an alcoholic killed a relative of yours while driving .drunk. His level of tolerance may he high as well but he was drunk according to the law, or would you repeal standards for drinking and driving as well?

Stephan Reuchlein
Stephan Reuchlein

"The number was pulled out of a hat" wow, sounds like the argument against banning high capacity magazines....true, on both arguments. Instead of arguing , would some experienced pot users please provide a way to determine intoxication by marijuana? Its use does impair motor functions and we just need to know a way to tell if you're driving when you shouldnt be.

orson
orson

Reasonable medical marijuana users do not deserve this mess.  An arbitrary limit, especially one so low, would cause many people to be wrongfully prosecuted for DUI.  The bill might as well say 0 nanograms.  I hate stupid stoners as much as anyone (except maybe donkeyhotay), but the existing impairment based drugged driving laws work and are more accurate than per se laws and covers all drugs.  This bill is more unnecessary legislation and I hope it fails again.  I'm expecting the worst but hoping for the best. 

Emily Langley
Emily Langley

Profiling = hippies, hip hop, granola crunchy types...and any other group that "looks" like they might like pot will be targeted for profiling. To worry if you can walk a tight rope or not would imply that they had probable cause which is generally the standard for testing drivers suspected of driving under the influence of anything. This bill lacks that and instead leaves it open to forced blood draw from anyone leaving cops to judge (ie profile) who they should decide to pull over any time anywhere. This bill is very flawed in science and understanding. We can do better. A bill like this is needed, this is the wrong one.

Steven Toth
Steven Toth

How are they going to bust people with profiling? I can smoke and walk a tight rope!

Tim Tindle
Tim Tindle

I say it every time, only if they also regulate prescription drugs as well.

Nick Murphy
Nick Murphy

No reason for it just another way to keep charging for marijuana I can see how it could work but just be on the look out for bad driving no need for more charges and prison over crowding

CoreyDonahue
CoreyDonahue

¨But the way I couched it last year was, if the bill can't be voted down, this is a fallback position.¨

With cannabis ¨lawers¨ like Rob Corry, who needs the DEA.

If it can´t be voted down?  This is an unscientific and unconstitutional proposal by the State and Rob is worried about a fall back position?  Fuck law is he defending? Dosen´t sound like the Constitution sound like the law of business.  And the Cannabis DUI is good for Rob´s business.  Good luck with that kind of representation.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

As structured, the bill puts the defendant in the position of having to prove the case. This is not how America works. It is the PROSECUTION'S job to prove the case.

He's correct when he says "Right now, the defendant is innocent until proven guilty." But under a permissible defense, "it would basically be guilty until proven innocent"

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

 *** Myopic Dispensary Operators chasing Fools Gold ***

http://money.cnn.com/2013/02/25/smallbusiness/marijuana-tax/

Marijuana dealers get slammed by huge taxes

Thanks to a decades-old law targeting drug runners, entrepreneurs in the nascent medical marijuana industry face a unique burden: an effective federal income tax rate that can soar as high as 75%.

The IRS bars those selling illegal substances from deducting related expenses on their federal income taxes.

It may have been effective against cocaine dealers and smugglers of other drugs, but the law also means purveyors of medical marijuana can't take typical things like rent or payroll as a business expense. 

"I'd personally love to give my employees a raise," said Kayvan Khalatbari, co-owner of Denver Relief, a medical marijuana center in its namesake city. "But because of the industry we're in, that's not always possible."

Khalatbari said Denver Relief does just over $1 million a year in sales, and that not being able to take some standard business deductions costs him tens of thousands of dollars annually. He estimates his effective federal tax rate is about 50%.

-- Any COMPETENT Lawyer or Accountant would have advised their clients of this financial disaster BEFORE they opened up the business ... that is if greedy profiteering dispensary operators were smart enough to hire a lawyer and accountant BEFORE they rushed in to the quagmire.

REGULATION WORKS! -- HUGE TAXES for MARIJUANA !!


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Why does WW continue to use Corry as a primary source for legal advice without notifying the readers of his extensive criminal history?


orson
orson

@Stephan Reuchlein  @DonkeyHotay 

It's a complex issue but basically I agree that recreational drug users have no business driving while they are using drugs recreationally.  Legitimate medical drug users however are a different matter imo.  Used responsibly as a medicine, marijuana is only as impairing as psychoactive anti-anxiety meds that a large percentage of the population use medicinally and have in their blood stream while driving.  Like many medicines, marijuana is usually only impairing if it's being abused with the intent to get impaired.  What the stoners don't realize is that you can't be both a medical and recreational marijuana user...if you ever use your "medicine" with the intent of getting impaired, you aren't a legitimate medical user. 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Stephan Reuchlein ... exactly. 

What these Alcohol and Marijuana users and abusers need to comprehend is that no one is forcing them to DRIVE a vehicle after they get wasted -- they can TAKE a fucking BUS ... or a Taxi ... or get a ride from some sober driver.

... or -- if it ever crossed their drug addled little brains -- simply NOT smoke dope or drink in the first place.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@orson "Reasonable medical marijuana users do not deserve this mess"

Then reasonable medical marijuana users should have Voted NO! and condemned that festering turd A64 back to the cesspool of failure from whence it came.

ANYONE who Voted for A64 ABSOLUTEY DESERVES this FIST of REGULATION rammed up their puckered asshole.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Steven Toth ... just don't drive the tight rope on Public Roadways.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Monkey ... and yet the Authors and Promoters of A64 were TOO STUPID to incorporate a reasonable, scientifically objective DUI standard ... instead simply declaring that DUI-m shall ALWAYS REMAIN ILLEGAL ... without defining or quantifying it.

Imagine the $$$$ windfall for the Marijuana McLawyers defending THOUSANDS of stoners who will automatically be over the limit anytime they drive ...

... perhaps the Marijuana McLawyers who wrote and pimped A64 weren't so stupid, eh?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... and to think the Stupid Stoners BEGGED for this, and put it permanently into the Colorado Constitution!

REGULATION WORKS !!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Jim Marty, an accountant in Colorado specializing in medicinal marijuana tax law, said he has one client that didn't turn a profit in 2009, 2010 or 2011. 

In 2012, though, she was handed a $300,000 tax bill from the IRS for those three proceeding years.

"Yet the IRS is aggressively auditing this industry." Marty said.

He said he often sees clients facing effective tax bills of 65% to 75%.

Poor Greedy Profiteering Dispensary Carpetbaggers -- and their McLawyers and Stoner Accountants --  FAILED to perform the appropriate Due Diligence.

{{{ crocodile tears }}}

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay Does his "criminal history" have anything to do with pot laws?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@mich.cannabisunivers  ... don't forget to remind them to include Cannabidiol -- CBD -- in any DUI-m intoxication standards.

Might as well also have them include the various synthetic cannabinoids just to be fair to everyone: 

  • JWH-018, a potent synthetic cannabinoid agonist. It is often sold in smoke blends collectively known as "spice"
  • CP-55940, produced in 1974, this synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonist is many times more potent than THC.
  • HU-210, about 100 times as potent as THC.
  • WIN 55,212-2, a potent cannabinoid receptor agonist.
  • JWH-133, a potent selective CB2 receptor agonist.
  • AM-2201, a potent cannabinoid receptor agonist.

Monkey
Monkey

@DonkeyHotay  I know, It does sound like a lawyers wet dream. It's all because of that "like alcohol" bullshit. Alcohol is the only thing with a numerical limit, so why did they want weed to be like alcohol? If only they had picked a more reasonable comparison, like regulate like tobacco, or regulate like herbal medicine, we would never have this numerical limit thrust down our throat. 

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Monkey I have to disagree on this one. It's already illegal to be under the influence, and the only way to tell is to do a sobriety test, which isn't perfect, but it's better than a PER SE law. They have no basis in reality.

orson
orson

@DonkeyHotay@Cognitive_Dissident

Stoners, prohibitionists, and lawyers need laws and regulations.  Stoners get off on breaking laws, prohibitionists get off on enforcing laws, and lawyers get off on the money they make from debating laws.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... it goes to credibility, professionalism and ethics, ipso facto.

If a lawyer can't keep themselves from earning multiple criminal convictions -- including weapon and sex offenses -- how valid and accurate is their criminal law advice to others?




Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay If it were willful ignorance. You have your substance, and a graph of what I'm talking about.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... many would consider willful ignorance to be a real fault.

ps: it's "too lazy"

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident You take vague pot shots because you're to lazy to find real faults.

Noted.

THCCOOH

%s

Happy?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident "Actually, it's some other weird metabolite (all I remember is it has two consecutive "O"s in it. I could look it up, but you get the point."

Yeah ... you spew inaccurate info due to your cognitive dysfunction, acknowledge that it is inaccurate, and are too lazy to correct it.

Noted.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident Actually, it's some other weird metabolite (all I remember is it has two consecutive "O"s in it. I could look it up, but you get the point. Hey, I agree, though. They'll do whatever they can get away with it and dare the courts to overturn it.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident "Frankly, the legal limit on alcohol is bullshit too. It also varies too greatly to be scientifically applied."

So what bunch of IDIOTS would want to associate Marijuana with Alcohol?

Wonder if the REGULATORS will figure out that the CBD in marijuana also has a deleterious effect upon motor skills and cognitive function ... and add that to their DUI-m bill ?


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@Monkey @DonkeyHotay Frankly, the legal limit on alcohol is bullshit too. It also varies too greatly to be scientifically applied. The wildcard between the two is that THC metabolites are not water soluble (so cling to fatty acids) and of course the dirty secret that the blood test doesn't actually TEST for THC...it tests for a different metabolite that remains in the system long after the THC is gone.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Monkey ... you already know the answer to that, my simple simian friend .

Stupid Stoners are as Stupid Stoners do!


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... by any other name. 

Amerika the Beautiful !

Good thing you have your precious pistols to defend you.

Shot any "tyrants" lately?


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay Apparently you're a little slow. Here's a list of the problems with the state:

  1. Its inherent violence
  2. The monopoly on all "services" it chooses to "offer."

No where is there listed or implied a demand for other sources of violence.

I believe all human interaction should be PEACEFUL and VOLUNTARY. What's wrong with that?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... well then, don't let the state bogart the violence you would claim for your own use, Mr McVeigh ...

... or is it Mr. Koresh?


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident Good thing I'm not one. By the way, this wouldn't be the first time a hypocrite like you tried to pin sociopathy on someone who acts against the immorality of the state's monopoly on violence and its use to institute fake laws.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident  ... good thing that psycho-sociopaths like you don't get to determine what is or isn't an "actual" crime, eh?


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident Naw, they're made-up, unconstitutional legislation. The nine traitors in dresses can't fathom "shall not be infringed" any more than they can fathom "public use" or "regulate." They should all be hanged.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident "Most "gun crimes" aren't even real crimes"

They sure feel real ... to the 1000s of people in prison for committing them.


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident Sex offenses (when defined as violating the property of another's body) aren't "bad legislation." They're already common law, for good reason. In the United States, "Gun criminal" is an oxymoron. People can and should be punished for violating people's peace and property, with or without a gun. Most "gun crimes" aren't even real crimes--they're bad legislation. It is in fact out of empathy that I would not deny a "felon"--one who cheated on his taxes, perhaps--his right to self-defense. I'm not in that situation and do not plan to be. It is, again, out of empathy that I consistently support the RTKBA.


In short, when you're wrong, as you clearly are, you should check your premises.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... so it's your "empathy" for Gun criminals and Sex offenders that drives you to disobey any law you determine to be "bad" ?

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident  

  1. It was you who claimed I "adore" Corry. I never implied any affection at all.
  2. Said it once, and I'll say it again: disobeying bad legislation is demonstrably not sociopathic, but it's not uncommon for people to try to apply labels to others which more correctly fit themselves.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident "I disobey bad legislation, and i'm proud of it."

Your self-confessed Criminal proclivity and Sociopathic behavior is hereby noted.

No wonder you adore Rob Corry.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay I think I proved my point. Sociopathy is about lacking empathy. The behavior I support, I do so because of empathy. Perhaps you should take the empathy test.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident "Disobeying bad legislation is not sociopathic ..."

Said the sociopath ...

... so how many runaway slaves are you harboring?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident "I disobey bad legislation, and i'm proud of it."

Your self-confessed Criminal proclivities and Sociopathic behavior are hereby noted.

No wonder you adore Rob Corry ...

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident I disobey bad legislation, and i'm proud of it. Too many people confuse legislation laws (such laws, including Corry's apparent infraction.) Laws are easy to follow. They're along the lines of "don't steal," "don't kill," "keep your contracts" and so forth.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident ... won't happen as long as criminal apologists like you accept such low standards of professionalism and unethical behavior.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident "as officers of the court -- are supposed to be held to a higher standard than the 'average American.'" 

Let me know when that actually happens. :-)

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident @DonkeyHotay 

Fortunately, Attorneys -- as officers of the court -- are supposed to be held to a higher standard than the "average American".

And even the "average American" isn't stupid and careless enough to GET CAUGHT committing WEAPONS and SEX offenses ... if they were even immoral enough to commit such crimes in the first place.




Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident The average American commits three felonies a day, without even knowing it. Even attorneys don't necessarily know or respect all laws, and in my experience, they're less discreet because they feel untouchable. I don't want to make too much of it, but once again, I'd say any of them is likely to be a criminal.

Besides, the ability to snare clients based on legal advice that could be wrong is practically a time-honored tradition amongst liars--er--lawyers.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident @DonkeyHotay 

If a lawyer is too stupid and careless to NOT GET CAUGHT committing CRIMES -- multiple criminal acts -- how reliable is their advice to others regarding the same?


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident

@DonkeyHotay Haven't you noticed most attorneys are crooks, whether they've been "caught," prosecuted or not? The accuracy of their advice is a separate issue from their inability to keep their peckers in their pockets.

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