Gonzales v. Raich
Although California residents had approved a ballot initiative legalizing marijuana for medical use, Butte County resident Diane Monson was surprised when the Drug Enforcement Administration seized the six plants in her backyard as illegal contraband under federal law. Monson used marijuana to treat her chronic back pain, and she found an ally in activist and fellow cannabis patient Angel Raich. Together, Raich and Monson sued the federal government, claiming that the federal ban on marijuana use was an unconstitutional exercise of Congressional authority under the Constitution's Commerce Clause. The documentary tells the story of this clash of federal and state power through interviews with Monson and Raich; their attorneys Robert Raich and Randy Barnett; U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and Acting U.S. Attorney John Vincent; and Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey.