Virginia governor pushes to legalize marijuana

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Virginia governor pushes to legalize marijuana

Virginia governor pushes to legalize marijuana

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Gov. Ralph Northam is pushing to legalize marijuana for recreational consume in Virginia, which will seemingly be the foremost Southern assert to originate so.

Northam presented his toughen for legalization Monday, announcing he desires a to blame manner that promotes racial equity and preserves formative years safety. The Democratic governor said he goes to indicate legislation all the scheme through subsequent year’s legislative session, a course of he said could well care for in to 2 years. Nonetheless he added that he’s certain the drug will in the end be gorgeous for deepest consume.

“Legalizing marijuana will happen in Virginia,” Northam said.

The governor had previously supported decriminalizing marijuana but no longer beefy legalization. He said there are many causes why he changed his mind, including unequal punishments for marijuana-related crimes among of us of color. A brand fresh legislative document issued Monday confirmed that the frequent arrest fee of Murky Virginians in most up-to-date years for marijuana possession became once 3.5 times higher than the arrest fee for whites.

Northam said it’s moreover certain that the public’s views bear largely shifted in settle on of legalization.

“As governor, I listen to of us,” Northam said.

He said he’s never tried the drug himself.

The governor’s announcement comes as marijuana turns into extra broadly permitted all the scheme during the United States. In essentially the most most up-to-date election, measures to legalize recreational pot passed in revolutionary Current Jersey, moderate Arizona and conservative Montana and South Dakota. Fifteen states bear now broadly legalized it, whereas 36 states allow scientific marijuana.

Voters in Mississippi overwhelmingly permitted scientific marijuana this month.

A Gallup Ballotreleased on Nov. 9 indicated that 68% of Individuals settle on legalizing marijuana – double the approval fee in 2003. That huge margin became once evident in the election, with marijuana measures passing with obtain bipartisan toughen.

Democrats took control of every and every chambers of the Popular Assembly this year and bear been in overall receptive to loosening prison penalties. Northam signed a bill decriminalizing marijuana earlier this year that passed with bipartisan toughen.

Condominium Minority Leader Del. Todd Gilbert, a Republican, said he’s in opposition to marijuana legalization in Virginia but is gentle willing to provide “constructive suggestions” on how the assert must gentle proceed if legalization eventually passes.

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