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Broadcasters Stuck in Pot Backlash?

San Diego DA cites their advertising as illegal

DEA efforts to crack down on marijuana dispensaries in California are on the rise; now broadcasters may face some unexpected fallout for airing such advertising.

In a recent entry on the blog of broadcast law firm Fletcher, Heald & Hildreth, lawyer (and RW contributor) Harry Cole looks at a mounting issue among the federal government, state of California and broadcasters stuck in the middle.

Cole in turn discusses a post from the Center for Investigative Reporting, citing actions of Laura Duffy, U.S. District Attorney for the Southern District of California. She calls the ad spots inappropriate and against the law, and has speculated about sending formal notices to TV, radio and print outlets that they are in danger of violating the law.

She was vague on possible punishments, though criminal prosecution made the list.

And with that, Cole frames an impending war waiting on the horizon:

“From one direction, we have the Great State of California … from the other direction, we have the federal government … and located right at the collision point of these two forces will be broadcasters and their print confrères, clutching the First Amendment.”