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Matt Ferner
Matt Ferner is the Denver editor for the Huffington Post. He is a graduate of University of Colorado Boulder and University of California, Los Angeles.

Entries by Matt Ferner

Colorado Shops Have Sold About $90 Million Of Recreational Weed

(8) Comments | Posted July 10, 2014 | 4:26 PM

In the first five months of legal retail sales, Colorado dispensaries sold about $90 million worth of recreational marijuana, The Denver Post reported Thursday.

Yet it was still outsold by its medical counterpart, which has been legal in the state since 2000. Medical marijuana brought in

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Terminal Cancer Patient Guilty In Marijuana Trial

(210) Comments | Posted July 9, 2014 | 9:18 PM

A terminal cancer patient who says he grew marijuana to treat his tumors was found guilty of drug charges Wednesday by an Iowa jury that wasn't allowed to hear his defense.

Benton Mackenzie, 48, was convicted in Iowa district court jury of marijuana manufacturing and conspiracy, along with his wife,...

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White House Admits Prison Won't Solve The Drug Problem, But Drug War Grinds On

(90) Comments | Posted July 9, 2014 | 8:35 PM

The Obama administration's drug czar admitted Wednesday that locking people up won't keep them from using drugs, but he stopped short of renouncing punitive policies that have made America's long war on drugs widely unpopular.

Michael Botticelli, head of the Obama administration’s Office of National Drug Control Policy, said in...

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Washington State Sells Legal Weed, World Does Not End

(15) Comments | Posted July 9, 2014 | 4:18 PM

Washington state completed its first day of legal, recreational marijuana sales -- and the world did not end.

Despite fewer than 10 shops opening across the state and concerns about a possible shortage of legal marijuana, the handful of open shops were met with throngs of exuberant shoppers and resulted...

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Terminal Cancer Patient Can't Use Illness As A Defense In Iowa Marijuana Trial

(226) Comments | Posted July 8, 2014 | 7:52 PM

An Iowa terminal cancer patient showed up to court Tuesday wrapped in a blanket, still wearing hospital identification wristbands, to testify at his trial on felony marijuana charges. He's been barred from a defense that explains the marijuana was to relieve his aggressive and rare cancer of the blood vessels.

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2 States Now Allow Recreational Marijuana Sales To Adults -- And Our Minds Are Blown

(49) Comments | Posted July 8, 2014 | 10:03 AM

Washington state joins Colorado Tuesday in allowing the sale of recreational marijuana to adults, delivering another sharp blow to the federal government's long war on drugs.

Washington's Liquor Control Board issued 24 retail marijuana business licenses on Monday, and some retailers said they would open on Tuesday....

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Terminal Cancer Patient Rushed To Hospital During Felony Trial For Medical Pot (GRAPHIC PHOTO)

(124) Comments | Posted July 7, 2014 | 7:11 PM

A 48-year-old terminal cancer patient was rushed to the hospital from an Iowa courthouse Monday during his trial over felony charges for growing marijuana he uses as a treatment for his rare condition.

Brian Wellner of Iowa's Quad-City Times' first reported that paramedics took Benton Mackenzie, who was...

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Tom Tancredo Catches 'Contact Buzz' As Filmmaker Smokes Legal Weed

(12) Comments | Posted July 3, 2014 | 4:44 PM

Former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.) may have lost the GOP gubernatorial primary in Colorado this year, but he did get a major role in a new documentary about the Centennial State's historic legalization of recreational marijuana. The conservative firebrand watches as the documentary's maker lights up some of the first...

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Washington State Is Low On Legal Weed For Retail Marijuana Debut

(76) Comments | Posted July 3, 2014 | 7:30 AM

Washington state's new recreational marijuana shops will open next week for the first time to legally sell marijuana to adults. But there's a problem: They're low on weed.

"Supply is going to be tight as this market launches," said Brian Smith, communications director for the state Liquor Control Board --the...

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Almost Anyone Can Have A Marijuana Business In Colorado Starting Today

(80) Comments | Posted July 1, 2014 | 7:16 PM

Want to get in on the Colorado green rush? If you're a resident of the state, you finally can.

Starting Tuesday, for the first time, any adult Colorado resident can apply for a retail marijuana business license.

This marks a significant shift in the state's groundbreaking recreational marijuana laws, which...

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Don't Worry, Parents, Teens Still Can't Buy Weed At Colorado Dispensaries

(2) Comments | Posted June 26, 2014 | 3:18 PM

Parents concerned about their teens buying marijuana illegally from one of Colorado's licensed recreational marijuana dispensaries can rest easy -- the pot shops aren't selling it to them.

That's according to the Colorado Department of Revenue's Marijuana Enforcement Division, which is charged with regulating the marijuana marketplace in the state....

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USDA Tells Employees It Will Still Drug-Test For Weed, Even In States Where It's Legal

(5) Comments | Posted June 25, 2014 | 7:31 PM

Employees of the U.S. Department of Agriculture who live in states where recreational or medical marijuana has been legalized, be warned. Your employer does not want you smoking pot.

A recent memo from USDA to its more than 100,000 employees makes clear that existing drug-testing policies haven't changed, even in...

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FDA To Evaluate Marijuana For Potential Reclassification As Less Dangerous Drug

(578) Comments | Posted June 24, 2014 | 6:44 PM

The feds could actually soften their stance a little when it comes to weed.

The Food and Drug Administration is reviewing the medical evidence surrounding the safety and effectiveness of marijuana, a process that could lead to the agency downgrading the drug's current status as a Schedule I drug, the...

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Medical Marijuana Patients Can't Bring Up Drug's Medical Use In Federal Trial

(144) Comments | Posted June 23, 2014 | 8:22 PM

A family of medical marijuana patients in Washington state will not be able to defend themselves against drug trafficking charges by presenting evidence that their state-legal marijuana grow was for personal medical use.

"In regard to the medical marijuana evidence, I'm still persuaded that it will confuse the jury," U.S....

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Why Legal Marijuana Supporters Should Worry About A Chris Christie Presidency

(181) Comments | Posted June 20, 2014 | 8:10 PM

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), campaigning Friday with New Hampshire Republican gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein, offered a glimpse of how he'd handle states like Colorado and Washington that have legalized recreational marijuana if he becomes president. It doesn't sound good.

In a video shot by Matt Simon,...

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Senate Measure Seeks To Protect Gun Rights Of Medical Marijuana Patients

(23) Comments | Posted June 19, 2014 | 8:43 PM

WASHINGTON -- An amendment offered in the Senate Wednesday would block the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives from targeting legal gun owners just because they're also medical marijuana patients.

Submitted by Sen. John Walsh (D-Mont.), the amendment to a Senate budgetary bill would ban the...

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Senate Could Follow House In Blocking DEA From Targeting Medical Marijuana

(41) Comments | Posted June 19, 2014 | 1:49 PM

WASHINGTON -- The Senate could soon follow the House in banning the Drug Enforcement Administration from using its budget to crack down on states that have legalized marijuana for medical purposes.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Wednesday introduced a Senate amendment to the Justice Department budget bill that...

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Hillary Clinton Leaves Door Open On Marijuana Legalization

(52) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 8:11 PM

Hillary Clinton said Tuesday she supports medical marijuana "for people who are in extreme medical conditions" and wants to "wait and see" how recreational pot works in Colorado and Washington state.

In an interview with CNN international correspondent Christiane Amanpour promoting her memoir Hard Choices, Clinton suggested she...

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30 Members Of Congress Demand Increased Access To Marijuana For Research Purposes

(14) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 1:52 PM

Thirty members of Congress, led by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), H. Morgan Griffith (R-Va.), Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) and Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell on Tuesday demanding an end to the federal monopoly on marijuana research so that more studies can be...

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Denver Still Not Overrun By Lawless Zombie Stoners, After 5 Months Of Legal Weed Sales

(23) Comments | Posted June 16, 2014 | 5:41 PM

It's been five months since residents and tourists alike could buy their first legal bags of marijuana in Denver, and despite the fears of many law enforcers, crime in the city still has not gone up.

According to the most recent available data, during the first five months...

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