Even before it began, 2019 has been hailed as the year of marijuana, with good reason: the number of Americans who support legalization has reached record highs, and an increasing number of Democratic presidential candidates are advocating for drug reform and an end to our draconian, racist drug laws.
On Thursday morning, Reps. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) and Don Young (R-AK) introduced what they called a “landmark” piece of legislation, the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2019, which is “the only bipartisan piece of legislation that would allow states to make independent choices about their marijuana programs,” according to Young.
In a press conference, Gabbard, who has also announced her candidacy for the 2020 presidential election, said the bill would remove marijuana from the federal Controlled Substances list, thereby allowing states to set up their own laws regulating the substance.
“We’ve seen now for generations how our archaic marijuana policies based on outdated myths and misplaced stigma have been used to wage a failed war on drugs,” Gabbard said. “We’ve seen the impact on families torn apart, communities left fractured, and the over-criminalization and mass incarceration that has become the norm, making an impact on the people in our communities as well as the taxpayer dollars being spent on this broken criminal justice system.” Read more