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A Cannabis Gun Control Circuit Split is Coming

Federal law prohibits marijuana users from owning or possessing firearms– even in states with legal marijuana. Over the last few months, different federal courts issued critical orders in cannabis gun rights cases which could challenge this status quo. Both cases centered on the 2022 U.S. Supreme Court case New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen, and both reached wildly different outcomes on essentially the same legal and even factual issues.

Last month, I wrote a post entitled “Will Gun Control Laws Soften for Cannabis Users?“, where I addressed one of those decisions, United States v. Harrison, out of the Western District of Oklahoma (part of the federal Tenth Circuit). Today, I want to examine the other case, Fried v. Garland, out of the Northern District of Florida (part of the federal Eleventh Circuit). Below, I offer some thoughts on Fried and how it contrasts with Harrison. I also look look at the potential for a circuit split on cannabis gun rights or gun control issues.

Before talking about Fried, it’s important to understand two things. The first is what I said above – that federal law deems cannabis users to be “prohibited persons” who may not legally

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