Marijuana legalization is so popular, even 60% of Republicans support it. Add Democrats, and it’s 62%. That shows it is a bipartisan, not Liberal, issue.
Fifty-eight percent of all likely voters—and 54 percent of voters who identified as Republicans—say the federal government should legalize the use and sale of cannabis for adults, according to a poll conducted by progressive data firm Data For Progress.
Those numbers increased after voters learned details of proposed legislation, currently locked in committee in the U.S. Senate, introduced by Sen. Kamala Harris (D-California), the Democratic nominee for vice president, according to the poll.
If it ever receives a Senate committee hearing, advances to the full Senate, and is approved—which may be too much to hope for in Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s Senate—the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, or MORE Act, would remove cannabis the Controlled Substances Act and allow certain marijuana-related offenses to be removed from individuals’ criminal records. It would also establish a national tax on legally sold cannabis products, and create an “opportunity fund” available to communities hurt by the War on Drugs from the proceeds.
When presented with that proposal, support for marijuana reform rises to 60 percent among Republicans, and 62 percent of all voters, according to results of the poll released Wednesday.
On Wednesday, more than 50 current and former attorneys general, prosecutors, and police officers sent a letter to Pelosi and Rep. Steny Hoyer, the No. 2 House Democrat, urging them to shepherd the MORE Act through the committee process and onto the House floor as soon as next month.
That would be a great way to please leftist Democratic voters demanding police reform, and free up resources for small-government minded conservatives all in one move, Krinsky said.
“In the wake of the pandemic, in the wake of the George Floyd racial equity moment, the public is coming around” on criminal-justice reform, she said. “If there ever were a moment to rethink drug policy and the criminalization of marijuana, that moment is now.”
And it might force the president’s hand.