Otter defends request to Trump to rein in legal marijuana sales

"I don't see the contradiction."
Posted at 11:58 AM, Feb 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-28 19:16:19-05

Idaho Gov. C.L. Butch Otter says his request to President Donald Trump to crack down on states with liberal marijuana laws is not a contradiction to his strong belief in states' rights. 

The Idaho Statesman reports Otter made the request in a Jan. 30 letter to Trump. In the letter he stated one of the most pressing concerns for Idaho from a criminal and public health standpoint is the availability of marijuana in states surrounding Idaho.

The sell and possession of certain quantities of marijuana for recreational use is legal in Washington, Oregon, Colorado, California and Nevada. The proximity of these states to Idaho prompted Otter to write Idaho is an "island of compliance" when it comes to federal marijuana laws. 

Tuesday, Otter said he doesn't see the contradiction in requesting the federal government take an active role in making states rein in their marijuana law and his belief in the importance of state sovereignty. 

"I also have a very firm belief and value in the rule of law," Otter said. "We actually fought a civil war over whether states could do certain things outside the legal structure of this country. I don't think it's out of character for me as a states rightsist, a 10th Amendment person, to say enforce the law."