Cannabis Legalization Cuts Across the Political Spectrum

   

Cannabis legalization is crossing political barriers in 2016 as Libertarian Presidential candidate Gary Johnson announced his support for California Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act , joining the democratic socialist Bernie Sanders, and a whole host of political figures across the political spectrum, including Republican Dana Rohrabacher and Democratic Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom. Johnson announced his support during the Republican Convention, so it flew under the radar a bit. While it shouldn’t be a shock to see Johnson supporting a legalization measure, sometimes libertarians are wary of the taxation and regulatory provisions of legalization efforts. It’s good to see him on board with AUMA.

From The Sacramento Bee:

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson said late Wednesday that he supports the initiative on California’s fall ballot to legalize recreational marijuana.

“Why do I support it?” Johnson, a longtime backer of decriminalizing marijuana, asked about Proposition 64 while leaving Quicken Loans Arena, site of the Republican National Convention. The initiative is supported by Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and billionaire entrepreneur Sean Parker.

“Whether you agree with marijuana legalization or not, you have friends, family, coworkers that use marijuana,” the former New Mexico governor said. “Are they criminal? No, they’re not criminal.”

There are many reasons to support ending cannabis prohibition, allowing the issue that cuts across partisan lines. There’s a reason that cannabis legalization measures often garner a higher percentage of the vote than popular national and statewide candidates. In 2012 Colorado’s Amendment 64 garnered more votes than President Obama and Oregon’s Measure 91, earning 56% of the vote in 2014, outperformed popular incumbent Senator Jeff Merkley. Whether you are for personal responsibility, creating jobs, social justice, generating more tax dollars or many other other issues, cannabis legalization is an issue that can bring together the far right, the far left and everyone in between.

This blog was originally posted at WeedNews.co, posted here with special permission.

Anthony Johnson

Anthony, a longtime cannabis law reform advocate, was Chief Petitioner and co-author of Measure 91, Oregon's cannabis legalization effort. He served as director of both the New Approach Oregon and Vote Yes on 91 PACs, the political action committees responsible for the state's legalization campaign. As director of New Approach Oregon, Anthony continues to work towards effectively implementing the cannabis legalization system while protecting small business owners and the rights of patients. He sits on the Oregon Marijuana Rules Advisory Committee and fights for sensible rules at the legislature as well as city councils and county commissions across the state. Anthony helps cannabis business comply with Oregon's laws and advises advocates across the country. He also serves as content director of both the International Cannabis Business Conference and the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference, helping share the vision of moving the cannabis industry forward in a way that maintains the focus on keeping people out of prison and protecting patients. He was a member of the Oregon Health Authority Rules Advisory Committee, assisting the drafting of the administrative rules governing Oregon’s state-licensed medical marijuana facilities. He first co-authored and helped pass successful marijuana law reform measures while a law student at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. He passed the Oregon Bar in 2005 and practiced criminal defense for two years before transitioning to working full-time in the political advocacy realm. His blogs on Marijuana Politics are personal in nature and don't speak for or reflect the opinions of any group or organization.