Charles Lynch Sentenced to 1 Year and 1 Day in Prison

Read the news story here and reason‘s coverage here. The video below is Lynch’s response:

While I’m not happy that Mr. Lynch is doing time for legally dispensing marijuana under California’s compassionate use law, he certainly could have received a much harsher sentence (up to 100 years). U.S. District Judge George Wu should be commended for finding an exception to the 5 year mandatory minimum sentence and reducing it to a relatively reasonable sentence of 1 year. That’s probably the best he could do under the circumstances.

There is however, one person who can correct this injustice perpetrated by the Bush Justice Department: President Obama. I urge all those who support the Tenth Amendment to join me in calling on President Obama to pardon Charles Lynch. Federalism is a much larger principle in this case than medical marijuana or even the war on (some) drugs. The State of California (whether one agrees or not with using marijuana for medicinal purposes), passed a law the federal government did not like. This law does not violate the U.S. Constitution and is, therefore, beyond the reach of the federal government according to the Tenth Amendment.*

Furthermore, President Obama and his Attorney General Holder have both said on several occasions that the federal raids on these dispensaries would end provided the operators are not violating both state and federal law. A full pardon of Charles Lynch would go a long way toward reversing a bad policy from the previous administration.

*At least that’s my lay reading of it.

  • MTB

    Has he been in jail this whole time? Does he get time-served?

  • Brad Warbiany

    This law does not violate the U.S. Constitution and is, therefore, beyond the reach of the federal government according to the Tenth Amendment.*

    The Federal Government currently considers Marijuana to be a Schedule I drug and illegal, and considers themselves to be acting Constitutionally in declaring such.

    If drug prohibition is Constitutionally acceptable under the powers of the federal government, California’s law would be unconstitutional because it would be interfering with a power delegated to the feds.

    Obama is not interested in reducing federal power, therefore he would NEVER invalidate this law on 10th Amendment grounds or pardon Lynch on 10th Amendment grounds.

    He, as an executive branch officer, can suggest that federal authorities not spend their time enforcing this law — which is what he’s promises and marginally lived up to. But you will NOT hear Obama suggest that the law is in error, and therefore he would never accept that there is a valid 10th Amendment challenge to the law.

  • Red

    I’m sketchy on when laws originated and were enforced however, are you quite sure the previous administration is the culprit? I’m only asking because it seems like I keep hearing whinnies from a dead horse. While I’m not waving a big flag for Bush, I’m pretty sure that all the ills of our current situation fall squarely on his administration. After all he stood to do some ‘inheriting’ himself.

  • Red

    I meant to type “do not” fall squarely on his shoulders. Blah! It’s too early…

  • John222

    One of the requirements to be a schedule one substance is that “The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.” That would appear to be wrong in the case of marijuana. As far as I know the scheduling of substances is left up to the FDA. The President could order or suggest that it be reclassified according to current uses. It is also non toxic, so regardless of the “potential of abuse”, it won’t kill you. That should also be taken into consideration.

    I don’t see the current administration making any “change” in this area as it would effectively reduce their power.