Tonight in Sodo, activists are holding the first of three trainings in Washington State to prepare for a surge of federal drug-enforcement raids on medical-marijuana patients. At issue is a recent warning from federal prosecutors, specifically aimed at medical-marijuana dispensaries, that says their operators could face mandatory-minimum sentences of up to 10 years in prison for violating state law.

Of course, those dispensary operators could be authorized by state law. And if they were "in clear and unambiguous compliance with existing state laws," the US Department of Justice says they wouldn't be the targets of prosecution.

Alas, a bill is on Washington Governor Chris Gregoire's desk right now—a bill that would license dispensaries and growers, which she could sign at any moment—that would do exactly that. Gregoire could eliminate this federal issue with the stroke of her pen. But as I reported last week, Gregoire says she'll veto that part of the bill. Gregoire, as it turned out, fabricated a controversy to argue that if state employees issued the dispensary licenses, they could be held criminally liable (even though other states license dispensaries, none of those state employees have been prosecuted, and federal policy and procedure on medical pot hasn't changed). Gregoire's speculation is unfounded, but that's her argument. As of today her office says she still intends to veto the bill's dispensary provisions.

In doing so, Gregoire would guarantee that that these dispensaries remain out of compliance with state law, and thus, Gregoire is inviting federal raids on sick people and their care providers. So in order to avoid a fake specter of something unrealistic happening (feds busting state employees), she is welcome a real, consequential set of raids on some of the most vulnerable people in the state. Tonight those folks are literally preparing for armed raids by federal agents wielding guns and battering rams.

The trainings are being conducted by the Cannabis Defense Coalition along with Americans for Safe Access. Details on trainings in Seattle, Ellensburg, and Spokane are here.