Click to next page for an update where I admit nobody agrees with my reading of oral arguments yesterday.
ORIGINAL POST, Feb. 5, 2:00 p.m.: The fate of California's medical marijuana movement is now in the hands of the seven justices of the California Supreme Court.
UPDATE, Feb. 6, 9:30 a.m.: Okay, so basically nobody agrees with me on this. After posting yesterday that the justices didn't seem to agree with Dunne's argument that banning is the same as regulating, I noticed that I was just about the only observer who thought this was important. Everyone else from the Los Angeles Times to NPR seems to agree that the justices feel that if state law required cities and counties to allow pot dispensaries to operate, the law would say so explicitly, which by all accounts it does not.
"California Seems Inclined to Uphold Bans on Pot Shops," reports one typical example LA Times story. "Several justices noted that the state Constitution gives cities wide policing power over land use and suggested that the state's medical marijuana laws have not undercut that authority," the Times reported, quoting Justice Ming W. Chin thusly: "The Legislature knows how to say 'Thou Shall Not Ban Dispensaries,' They didn't say that."
The court has 90 days to issue its ruling, deciding the fate of roughly 200 local bans throughout California.