Supreme Court denies challenge to Colo. pot laws

Posted at 9:40 AM, Mar 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-21 13:40:56-04

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday denied Nebraska and Oklahoma's proposed lawsuit against Colorado's legal marijuana laws.

The decision means the nation's highest court will not rule on the interstate dispute, and Colorado's legal cannabis market is safe — for now.

Because the Supreme Court has passed on the case, Nebraska and Oklahoma could now take it to a federal district court if they choose to, law experts say. The states have not yet said how or if they will move forward with a similar suit in another court.

"The complaint, on its face, presents a 'controvers[y] between two or more States' that this Court alone has authority to adjudicate," Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in the dissenting opinion. "The plaintiff States have alleged significant harms to their sovereign interests caused by another State. Whatever the merit of the plaintiff States' claims, we should let this complaint proceed further rather than denying leave without so much as a word of explanation."

Justice Samuel Alito joined Thomas in dissenting.

Read more from our partners at The Denver Post.