Kevin Glass

A state constitutional amendment ballot initiative passed by Colorado voters in the 2012 elections approved the legalization of marijuana, and Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper signed the regulations around the recreational drug today.

The laws cover how the drug should be raised and packaged, with purchasing limits for out-of-state visitors and a new marijuana driving limit as an analogy to blood alcohol levels. Hickenlooper didn't support marijuana legalization last year, but he praised the regulatory package as a good first crack at safely overseeing the drug.

The laws cover how the drug should be raised and packaged, with purchasing limits for out-of-state visitors and a new marijuana driving limit as an analogy to blood alcohol levels. Hickenlooper didn't support marijuana legalization last year, but he praised the regulatory package as a good first crack at safely overseeing the drug.

This might be where it gets interesting. Marijuana is still illegal for recreational consumption according to the federal governmen. The director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy - a.k.a. the "drug czar" - has said that the federal government will continue "enforcement against distributors and large-scale growers as the Justice Department has outlined." Which means that while local growers and sellers in Colorado may not have to worry about local law enforecement crackdowns, the federal Department of Justice will still target those in Colorado.

Gov. Hickenlooper implied that the Department of Justice have bigger problems on their hands than marijuana regulation in Colorado. "They've been kind of busy," Hickenlooper said.


Kevin Glass

Kevin Glass is the Managing Editor of Townhall.com. Follow him on Twitter at @kevinwglass.