The U.S. First Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last month that state-regulated cannabis markets are subject to the dormant commerce clause. Over the past decade, multiple states have enacted policies that intentionally impede the free movement of goods, persons, and capital within this particular industry. With this ruling, however, these impediments are likely unconstitutional.
The dormant commerce clause is a doctrine of constitutional law derived from a series of court cases interpreting the interstate commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution. The Constitution’s framers were expressly motivated to replace the original form of American government, as articulated under the Articles of Confederation,