Refresh Checked Unchecked Menu Search Shopping bag Geolocation Person Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube Info Icon CBC Icon CBC Shape CBD Icon CBD Shape CBG Icon CBG Shape THC Icon THC Shape THCV Icon THCV Shape
Advertise on Leafly

Here’s where the 2020 presidential candidates stand on cannabis

June 26, 2019
This week's Democratic debates will be the last 10-on-10 forum. Somebody's gotta go. (AP)
This article was updated on 7/29/2019.
With dozens of declared candidates ready to take on President Trump in Nov. 2020, America’s aspiring chief executives are scrambling for ways to catch the eyes of primary voters. So why not use cannabis as a sorting device?

 

(AP, Leafly)

Cannabis used to be a liberals-only issue, but not anymore. In fact, President Trump’s only declared primary challenger (so far), former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld, is an outspoken libertarian and full-throated advocate for legalization.

By contrast, the Democratic frontrunner in the summer of 2019, former Vice President Joe Biden, established himself as an ardent drug warrior in the 1990s and can’t understand why so many young people today want to legalize.

We did the research. Here’s what we found (in alphabetical order). Vote, donate, and volunteer as your conscience demands.

(Leafly)

Michael Bennet

US senator, Colorado

(AP)

Although he opposed Colorado’s 2012 legalization bill, Amendment 64, Bennet has since become a champion of cannabis legalization, as well as hemp. Most recently, he co-signed the 2019 Marijuana Justice Act.

“We see hemp as a great opportunity to diversity our farms and manufacture high-margin products for the American people.” (2018)

Joe Biden

Former vice president, former US senator, Delaware

(AP)

An outspoken proponent of the war on drugs, as well as the former chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Joe Biden hasn’t become much more amenable to cannabis in recent years; he is the only 2020 Democratic candidate who remains explicitly opposed to federal legalization. He supports rescheduling cannabis as a Schedule II drug, which would facilitate scientific research. In May, Leafly characterized Biden’s stand with this headline: Biden Pledges Tepid Support for Cannabis Half-Measure.

“There’s a difference between sending someone to jail for a few ounces and legalizing it…The punishment should fit the crime. But I think legalization is a mistake. I still believe [marijuana] is a gateway drug.” (2010)

Then in mid-July, as Biden looked around and realized he was the only candidate (besides Trump) still standing in the way of legalization, he changed his tune. Kind of. The former vice president released a 10-page justice reform proposal that included: decriminalization of cannabis, $20 billion in prevention funds for communities, efforts to reduce racial profiling by police, more job training in prisons, ending private prisons, and other ideas. “I believe my criminal justice reform package is as strong or stronger than anyone else,” Biden said.

Related

Joe Biden’s Drug War Record Is So Much Worse Than You Think

Cory Booker

US senator, New Jersey

(AP)

A longtime critic of the war on drugs and advocate of cannabis reform, Booker raised the bar on cannabis legislation this year when he became the chief sponsor of the progressive and far-reaching Marijuana Justice Act. Until recently, Booker stood virtually alone in his support for both legalization and social equity programs to help repair the damage done by the war on drugs.

“I believe too many of my young people are being unfairly punished and chewed up by the criminal justice system over small amounts of marijuana. Their lives are being severely and adversely affected by the sheer number of arrests and incarcerations we are making.  (2013)

Related

The Latest Cannabis Bill in Congress Would Do More Than Just Legalize

Steve Bullock

Governor and former attorney general, Montana

(AP)

Although Bullock has been an outspoken advocate of medical marijuana in Montana and a vocal opponent of rescinding the Cole Memo, he has kept mum on federal legalization; his public comments suggest that he is not in favor of recreational cannabis.

“I don’t want unlimited grow operations and things like that. I don’t think anybody does…I don’t think we want the chronic pain of ages 19 to 29 be the largest group [of medical cannabis patients].” (2012)

Related

Liberty, Jobs, and Freedom: How Cannabis Became a Conservative Issue

Pete Buttigieg

Mayor, South Bend, Indiana

(AP)

Although he’s never tackled cannabis during his time as mayor of South Bend, Buttigieg has become a vocal proponent of ending cannabis prohibition, and often frames the issue in the context of racial disparities.

“What are we going to do…if we decide that it actually doesn’t make sense to [incarcerate] for unbelievably long amounts of time for non-violent drug offenses, what are we going to do for the people we already did that to?” (2019)

Related

Cannabis Politics Isn’t Just Red States vs. Blue States Anymore

Julián Castro

Former HUD secretary, former mayor of San Antonio

(AP)

As recently as 2014, Castro was skeptical of cannabis reform; in the past couple of years, however, he has become critical of the Trump Administration’s interference with state laws and is seemingly in favor of federal legalization.

“[Rescinding the Cole memo] is a mistake. Colorado and other states have shown we can sensibly legalize marijuana with reasonable controls.” (2017)

Bill DeBlasio

Mayor, New York City

(AP)

DeBlasio has advocated for reducing cannabis-related arrests since he became mayor of New York City in 2014; he didn’t come out in favor of adult-use legalization until this past December, however, just two days after Governor Cuomo.

“I have been convinced that we can establish a regulatory framework that keeps our streets safe, rights the wrongs of the past, and gives economic opportunity to communities hit hardest by the war on drugs.” (2018)

Related

New York Mayor Comes Out Strong for Legalization With Equity

John Delaney

Former US representative, Maryland

(AP)

Although he hasn’t sponsored any cannabis legislation himself, Representative Delaney earned a “B” rating from NORML for his consistent voting record in favor of cannabis reform.

“[The war on drugs] has contributed to a criminal justice system where people of color are disproportionately harmed.” (2018)

Related

How Can Black People Get Rich Off Cannabis, Too?

Tulsi Gabbard

US representative, Hawaii

(AP)

In the past couple of years Gabbard has sponsored and co-sponsored many cannabis reform bills; a military veteran, she has advocated for veterans’ legal access to cannabis. In March 2019, she and Alaska Rep. Don Young introduced the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act, which would remove cannabis from the federal controlled substances list and allow states to regulate the substance with full authority.

“[The criminal justice system] puts people in prison for smoking marijuana while allowing corporations like Purdue Pharma, who are responsible for the opioid-related deaths of thousands of people, to walk away scot-free with their coffers full.” (2019)

Kirsten Gillibrand

US senator, New York

(AP)

While Gillibrand has publicly advocated for medical cannabis since at least 2014, she has recently evolved to become one of the most vocal pro-legalization candidates vying for the Democratic nomination.

“Sadly, as you will hear from my constituents, for decades, the so-called ‘war on drugs’ has not been pursued with equality.” (2018, in a letter to then-AG Sessions)

In early June, Gillibrand became one of the few candidates to roll out a full legalization plan. “Legalization is a criminal justice issue, a health care issue, and an economic issue,” she wrote. “It’s past time to make this happen at the federal level.”

In July, Gillibrand further solidified her bona fides with a performance at a campaign gathering in Ohio, where she brilliantly explained the problem with racial disparities, white privilege, and the war on drugs.

Related

This 2020 Presidential Hopeful Actually Has a Legalization Plan

Kamala Harris

US senator, California; former attorney general, California 

(AP)

Harris has made the most dramatic shift in her cannabis views of any of the 2020 candidates. A few years ago she spoke brazenly about convicting drug dealers in California and openly scoffed at questions of legalization. She has since become a sponsor of the Marijuana Justice Act (although it took her a while). Among the 2020 candidates, she has also become the most open about her own cannabis use.

“The war on drugs was a failure…It criminalized what is a public health matter. It was a war on poor communities more than anything.” (2017)

Harris has continued to evolve on the issue. On July 22, she introduced the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, aka the MORE Act, which would remove cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act. The MORE proposal would also require federal courts to expunge prior marijuana-related convictions, allow prior offenders to request expungement of their criminal records and, if needed, request re-sentencing hearings.

It would also halt the denial of federal public benefits based on marijuana possession or previous pot-related convictions, while making sure those offenses “will have no adverse impact under the immigration laws.” The Act would also authorize a 5% federal sales tax on cannabis products to fund an Opportunity Trust Fund for socially and economically disadvantaged communities.

Related

Kamala Harris Evolved Slowly on Legalization, but She’s All About It Now

John Hickenlooper

Former governor, Colorado

(AP)

8/223/2019 update: John Hickenlooper dropped out of the race on Aug. 22. 

Even though Hickenlooper used to consider cannabis a “gateway drug” and publicly opposed Colorado’s legalization efforts, he has since come around to the issue and signed many cannabis reform bills while in office. Still, no legalization advocate in Colorado would consider Hickenlooper an ally. He allowed the will of the voters to take effect in 2012, but he didn’t like legalization then and he’s still not a big fan of it now.

“…federal law still says marijuana is an illegal drug, so don’t break out the Cheetos or goldfish too quickly.” (2012)

Related

Colorado Officials Say: Stop Freaking, We Ain’t Retreating

Jay Inslee

Governor, Washington

(AP)

8/23/2019 update: Jay Inslee dropped out of the race on Aug. 21.

Like Hickenlooper, Inslee was initially opposed to legalization in his state, but has since become an advocate of federal cannabis reform, and has championed expunging marijuana misdemeanor charges in the state. Earlier this year he announced that he would pardon 3,500 people with low-level cannabis convictions statewide. Which is more than Hickenlooper has done.

“As states continue to legalize medical and recreational marijuana, there is more that the federal government must to do to provide states with legal certainty and empower the operation of safe systems across the country.” (2016)

Related

Washington Gov. Inslee to Pardon 3,500 Cannabis Convictions

Amy Klobuchar

US senator, Minnesota

(AP)

Klobuchar addresses cannabis far less than most of the other candidates on the campaign trail. Although she signed on to the STATES Act, she has not supported the Marijuana Justice Act. Shortly before announcing her bid for presidency, she deleted a statement of support for the state’s medical marijuana program from her website. But then in February, a little more than a week after entering the presidential race, she said she now supports adult-use legalization, a full 180-degree pivot from her previous policy.

“I support the legalization of marijuana and believe that states should have the right to determine the best approach to marijuana within their borders.”

Wayne Messam

Mayor, Miramar, Florida

(AP)

Messam, the longest of the long shots, has not publicly revealed a position on legalization. Very little is known about Messam’s stance on cannabis—or any other issue, for that matter, aside from fighting climate change and the NRA.

“As long as those states that choose to do so continue to enforce DUI laws, spread economic benefits throughout all communities, and expunge records for those arrested for selling marijuana, they would have my full support as President.” (2019)

Related

Legalization Gave Police Time to Fight Real Crime, Study Finds

Seth Moulton

US representative, Massachusetts

(AP)

8/23/2019 update: Seth Moulton dropped out of the race in late August.

Although he doesn’t speak often about recreational cannabis, Moulton, a military veteran, has spearheaded several bills supporting veterans’ access to medical cannabis.

“We’ve got to bring marijuana out of the shadows and actually regulate it.” (2016)

Beto O’Rourke

Former US representative, Texas

(AP)

O’Rourke has been advocating for drug reform for a decade, much longer than many of the other 2020 contenders. He is an outspoken advocate of federal legalization.

“We stand a better chance of keeping kids from using marijuana if it is sold by regulated businesses instead of by teenagers on street corners and middle school playgrounds,” (2014)

Related

How Cannabis Legalization Sparked Beto O’Rourke’s Presidential Bid

Tim Ryan

US representative, Ohio

(AP)

Ryan has a long history of voting for cannabis reform bills, dating back to 2003. His recent co-sponsorship of the Marijuana Justice Act is his boldest move yet. In July 2018, when others were still waffling on the issue, Ryan wrote a CNN op-ed calling for full national legalization.

“We have ignored the social and economic toll of our marijuana laws for too long. It is morally wrong, economically nonsensical, and an unnecessary strain on our already strained law enforcement officials.” (2018)

Bernie Sanders

US senator, Vermont; Former US representative and mayor of Burlington, VT

(AP)

Sanders is one of the most pro-cannabis candidates on this list, and he didn’t just discover the issue last month. He first pushed for cannabis legalization 20 years ago, and, during the 2016 election, became the first major party Presidential candidate to support cannabis legalization. He’s currently one of the leading sponsors of the Marijuana Justice Act in Congress.

“Right now, marijuana is listed by the federal government as a Schedule I drug—meaning that it is considered to be as dangerous as heroin. That is absurd.” (2015)

Related

Bernie Sanders Co-Sponsors the Marijuana Justice Act

Eric Swalwell

US representative, California

(AP)

Update: July 8, 2019 — Rep. Eric Swalwell has dropped out of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination. Swalwell said he was suspending his campaign and would focus on winning reelection to Congress next year. 

Swalwell, a former prosecutor, has earned an “A” rating from NORML for his longtime support of cannabis reform. Unlike many other 2020 candidates, including fellow Californian Kamala Harris, he endorsed his state’s adult-use initiative long before it passed.

“Prosecution of marijuana violations clog our already overburdened courts and cost hundreds of millions of dollars annually to enforce.” (2016)

Donald Trump

US president, businessman

(AP)

Trump has sent mixed messages on cannabis over the past few years. He has said that the issue should be determined by individual states, but also nominated an epically anti-cannabis attorney general, Jeff Sessions. Trump had issues with Sessions, but the AG’s bizarre obsession with cannabis was not one of them. Trump did nothing to halt Sessions’ major move on cannabis, rescinding the Cole Memo in early 2018. Recently his administration shot down a series of bills to facilitate veterans’ access to cannabis. And the White House has blocked a bill that would make it easier to study the use of medical cannabis by those same veterans. In a recent column, Leafly’s Bruce Barcott said this about the gap between Trump’s words and deeds on cannabis issues:

Still wondering what Trump thinks about legalization? Hang on, let me order a big-ass neon billboard from Obvious Signage & Sons. Here’s what it says: HE’S AGAINST IT.

“In terms of marijuana and legalization, I think that should be a state issue, state-by-state. Marijuana is such a big thing.” (2015)

Related

Time to Admit It: Trump Opposes Cannabis Legalization

Elizabeth Warren

US senator, Massachusetts

(AP)

Although Warren did not support her state’s adult-use cannabis bill in 2016, she has since evolved significantly on the issue; she has sponsored and endorsed a wide range of cannabis reform bills, including the STATES Act, the leading bill to end federal prohibition.

“No one should go to jail for a joint. But more Americans are arrested for marijuana possession than all violent crimes combined.” (2018)

Related

The STATES Act Is Back. Can It Win Over Congress?

William Weld

Former governor, Massachusetts

(AP)

Weld has had a bizarre relationship with cannabis. Or maybe he’s just evolving. He was President Reagan’s man in Massachusetts during the height of the war on drugs in the 1980s, but by 2016 he was the Libertarian party’s candidate for vice president, running alongside former cannabis company executive Gary Johnson, on an anti-prohibition platform. He’s now come back to the Republican fold and currently sits on the board of Acreage Holdings with former US Speaker of the House and longtime cannabis opponent John Boehner.

“I think [national legalization] is inevitable. I don’t think any politician is going to be able to stop it.” (2018)

Related

Meet Acreage Holdings, John Boehner’s New Cannabis Crush

Marianne Williamson

Author

(AP)

Williamson has not made cannabis a central element of her campaign, but has iterated her support of legalization and the need of a crackdown on the opioid epidemic.

“If marijuana were legal, it would be more of a controlled substance…not less.” (2013)

Andrew Yang

Entrepreneur

(AP)

Yang has been explicit about his pro-legalization views since jumping into the campaign; recently, however, he had to walk back a promise to pardon all non-violent drug offenders on 4/20 to only include individuals convicted of violating federal marijuana laws.

“Our criminalization of marijuana is stupid and racist, particularly now that it’s legal in some states.” (2018)

Max Savage Levenson's Bio Image

Max Savage Levenson

Max Savage Levenson likely has the lowest cannabis tolerance of any writer on the cannabis beat. He also writes about music for Pitchfork, Bandcamp and other bespectacled folk. He co-hosts The Hash podcast. His dream interview is Tyler the Creator.

View Max Savage Levenson's articles

  • familyguy

    I’m hoping for a level headed, young, candidate that supports legalization. The last thing we need is another old fart with antiquated points of view. I thing neither Trump or Biden fit my description.

    • Stop_being_lied_to

      Ageism is hate – just like racism, misogyny, misandry and homophobia.
      You’re hate is disgraceful and has no place in this country. Please move somewhere else that embraces it.

    • Flyman

      I am an old fart that does support Federal legalization, I have smoked pot since I was 20, I am now 73. I just want to say Legalizing Marijuana at the Federal would be great, however it is not by any means important enough to be the sole reason you vote for someone. I am a Republican and wish they would support legalizing pot, eventually they will come around to it. If any of the complete fucking Morons running for the Democratic Party nomination should actually win the Presidency and the Congress this Country is destined to be like Venezuela, any of these America hating idiots will start destroying the Country the minute they are elected. Use your head when you vote if you do, I have lived with it being illegal for 73 years, even grew it for about 18 years, so it sure as hell isn’t as important as Americas future.
      As far as the Left Legalizing it do not hold your breath, if a Democrat’s mouth is moving he/she is lying………………

      • L. L.

        Since taking office, President Trump has told over 10,000 documented lies, but who’s counting? Perhaps you should rethink your party affiliation. The Republicans do not lie? As a family man, how are your younger relatives doing with health care coverage? The Republicans (President Trump) said that the Republicans would be coming out with their health insurance plan months ago; where is it? Do you really believe they are working on such a plan without someone knowing about it? What have the Republicans done to stop drug price gouging? The President could easily say that he wants to amend the statute which prohibits Medicare from negotiating drug prices. He could send a proposed amendment to Congress tomorrow, but he won’t. Medicare for all is not a socialist conspiracy, it is an attempt to provide for a basic human need, without putting you in bankruptcy court.

        • TexasToker

          Thank god not everyone buys his bullshit! The only socialist is Trump!! He is constantly doing shit to benefit himself in the name of the people and no one seems to realize it! When you have 1 hotel pulling in $41 million for you in profit you have no business making decisions or policies for the nation! People please WAKEUPIN2020

      • Joe

        It’s not just Democrats they are all lying douchebags Republicans and Democrats and you’re crazy if you only think it’s democrats.

  • Christie Fox

    I’m really impressed with Kamala Harris. She got my attention like a lightening bolt at the Kavanaugh hearings. The way she worded her questions was awesome. He was side-stepping every question (with everyone) and she ended her questions with “Yes or No.” Kamala is an intelligent, quick thinker. Her performance at the debate was clearly a cut above the rest. I have confidence she would be a great president.

    • Stop_being_lied_to

      In other words – you really like opportunistic grandstanding. I get a kick that she opposed legalization, but smoked it herself. Nothing like a hypocrite, regardless of (D) or (R) running the country, eh?

    • Concerned

      Harris is a disgrace to the office. Her city of San Fran is a virtual sewer of deprivation, filth, poverty, drug use and despair. She has the morals of a snake and she has shown herself to opportunistic rather than courageous on all the issues…not a problem solver at all. God help us if this poor excuse for a leader gets in.

    • Coni

      She really was a bull dog, very straight forward, intelligent, respectful and didn’t laugh, when he tried to joke (he wasn’t funny)

  • Bob Skilnik

    They all bend like tall grass to wind. Why would anyone vote for these phonies just because they say they want cannabis legalized. In the meantime, they want to raise your taxes, provide drivers licenses and give free healthcare to illegal aliens. Who pays for all this? We do.

  • timedonkey

    The Presidential Election of 2020 will be determined by the Marijuana Movement. In 2019, the Cannabis Movement is the most dynamic and viable political movement in the nation. It is no surprise, Cannabis has always had significant economic and political gravity since before the founding of the nation. The historical record is clear and undisputed, hemp was essential to commerce and nation states, so important that laws were passed to force land holders to grow hemp. Hemp played a larger role in 18th century politics than oil plays today, everything was connected to cannabis. Simply put, war and commerce were impossible without hemp.

    1619, Jamestown, Virginia,
    The first English settlement in America passed the first law about cannabis, requiring settlers to grow Indian Hemp. Jamestown was a real estate deal to be paid for with hemp grown in America; in fact, the entire business plan for the colonies was based on hemp production. Mandatory cultivation laws were passed in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Hemp was used as legal tender, and until the 1900’s some states allowed folks to pay their taxes in hemp. Our forefathers were not confused about cannabis, they used it to live, to make money and smoked it to become inspired just like we do today. Franklin, Jefferson and Washington all smoked and ate cannabis and hash, that is how they wrote such high minded and universal documents. It is no wonder that today’s political leaders can not generate any spiritually cogent ideas and are void of common sense, none of them use or know about the power of cannabis to help humans. It is that simple.

    The Freedom Hemp Connection
    Hemp became the number one economic product of the colonies. Mandatory production was common as the demand for hemp products was insatiable. Cannabis was used for clothing, food, sails, wagon canvas, rope, medicine and recreation. George Washington and Ben Franklin did it all and encouraged others to do likewise. To this day George Washington is revered as America’s first and most important cannabis advocate. Hemp production was the key to economic freedom for a very practical reason, every man, woman and child could plant hemp seeds and 90 days latter have a crop that everyone in the world wanted. Hemp production turned everyone into a free enterprise entrepreneur. We did not need welfare; we had hemp. The story on the street in England was simple, go to America, plant hemp and get rich. America had a welfare and jobs program called cannabis. It sure worked before and weed could do it again.

    Virtuous Economic Cycle
    Hemp production created a virtuous economic cycle that lifted all boats, farmers grow, processors separate fiber, rope makers make rope, others make clothing, medicines, sails, in total an entire economy. All of our revered forefathers grew, bought, sold and distributed cannabis products. George Washington, Thomas Franklin and Thomas Jefferson were all pot dealers and distributors, selling as much as they could. Under current law they would all be indicted for managing a continuous criminal enterprise, this is a measure of how far from the thinking of our founding fathers current leadership exhibits. The results speak for themselves, Thomas Jefferson smokes some pot and writes the Declaration of Independence, today’s uninformed, bought and paid for leaders criminalized pot and write the fascist Patriot Act, undoing as much of the Declaration of Independence as they could. All cannabis users know the truth. Period.

    In 1776 America had a RBE, Resource Based Economy providing the highest standard of living in the World. We were the envy of every Nation and a symbol of what Free Men could do when given the opportunity and a cup of hemp seeds. So when the Declaration of Independence was signed and the red, white and blue, made from hemp flag was flown, it waved over a population clothed in hemp, whose main economic activity was hemp related, used cannabis as medicine and money and was ready willing and able to declare War on anyone who tried to stop them. The entire American experiment was made possible because of marijuana, face it, because it gets deeper.

    The War of 1812 was fought over access to hemp.
    The story is complicated with control of the Cannabis business as the Grand Prize. The stage needs to be set to grok what transpired.

    In 1812 Hemp was the Key commodity of the world being essential to War and Commerce. Russia produced 80 percent of the world’s hemp used by France, England and Spain.

    Napoleon and the French Revolution caused England to blockade hemp shipments to France for fear of an invasion from Napoleon. Napoleon in a desperation move to raise money, negotiated the sale of the Louisiana Territory, all because of a need for hemp. So hemp in a mystical way was the causal force in what would become America’s Manifest Destiny, but it does not stop.

    1807, Napoleon and the Czar of Russia sign the Treaty of Tilset, banning British ships from purchasing hemp from Russia. Britain began to stop and impress American sailor offering them the option of running the French blockade for the English or have the ship confiscated. The Yankees were all blockade runners and the Czar of Russia ignored the Treaty.

    In 1809, John Quincy Adams acknowledged as much,
    “As many as 600 clipper ships, flying the American flag, in a two-week period, were in Kronstadt” the Port of St. Petersburg where they mainly loaded hemp for England and America. Our forefathers, with government support were the first Marijuana smugglers, so effective as to cause Napoleon to become so angry as to declare War on Russia for allowing Yankee smugglers to traffic hemp. Hemp can make and hemp can destroy. Napoleon started with the Grand Army of 600,000 and returned in utter defeat with less than 20,000, all in an effort to control hemp.

    The Marijuana Tax Act and the birth of Fake News
    or Marijuana and Racism,
    Hemp production continued to grow the economy until 1937 when once again the confluence of cannabis, commerce and politics would become the flash point for change. It starts with anti-Mexican sentiment in America exacerbated by unemployment and hard economic times. Newspapers were the Internet of the day and big, big business. The way to sell newspapers is with extreme news about horror, crime and sex, headlines were the first click bait and the more radical the better. The Hurst newspaper group was anti-Mexican and anti-marijuana just to sell papers. This was the beginning of Fake News with stories of Mexicans smoking marijuana and raping white women.

    The fear of racial sexual dominance triggered the white population when some of the most racist comments in the history of words were made by the Harry Anslinger, the first head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and widely publish by the Hearst Newspaper Group, to wit.

    “There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the U.S., and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz and swing result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers and any others.”
    The sex got everyone’s attention, puritanical America was horrified and in general anything that makes a white woman seek sex is by definition dangerous. Anslinger knew that for him to gain power the people of America had to be afraid, very afraid of cannabis and the folks who used it. The longest running, government supported fake news propaganda program in our history is the marijuana prohibition.

    The manufactured, fake news gave public support for the Marijuana Tax Act. Congressional hearings failed to support any of the health and crime claims but were ignored because of who initiated the Act, Treasury Secretary, Andrew Mellon who was the principle stock holder of a new company called DuPont. DuPont wanted to sell nylon rope and canvas, hemp was their only competition. He initiated this act to further his own economic position. This is the birth of the Modern Administrative State, spiritual folks call it the Beast, in fact a web of laws that control the economy and liberty of the People through media propaganda, the police state and mass incarceration. In an instance of Grand Irony Popular Mechanics in 1938 published an article entitled ‘The World’s First Billion Dollar Crop detailing the economic potential of hemp for America enumerating the 25,000 different uses for cannabis ranging from cellulose to dynamite. Then again in February 1938, Mechanical Engineering calls hemp the most profitable and desirable crop that can be grown. It still is.

    Popular Mechanics Feb. 1938
    The racism and fake news about marijuana continued and cannabis became known as a dangerous drug instead of the most beneficial crop that can be grown. It was fascism pure and unquestioned until, until the Hippies.

    The Vietnam War, Hippies and Marijuana
    converged to display the political, spiritual and social influence of cannabis with the Anti-War Movement. The Baby Boomers went to college and smoked some pot. We liked it, a lot and thought it a far superior recreational substance than our parents’ choice, alcohol. The spirit of sharing the herb is tranquil, peaceful and contemplative, mind opening. We would smoke and talk about philosophy, politics and life. The one thing all of us knew was that the government lies about marijuana. We tested and proved this in ourselves. Cannabis became the social sacrament of our times and the urban proof that politicians can and will lie. We were the first generation that did not believe the power structure because we knew in ourselves that they lied about marijuana and they are lying about the War in Vietnam. Our marijuana inspired battle cry was an existential repudiation of our parents world view, they puked when we said, ‘Make love Not War’. The Culture War was a ‘Fear Biting’ reaction to pot smoking Peacenicks. President Nixon responded by launching the War on Drugs to specifically target his political enemies, Hippies and Blacks. In an interview with Harper’s magazine, John Ehrlichman recalled the true marrow of the War on Drugs,

    “You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin. And then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities,” Ehrlichman said. “We could arrest their leaders. raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.”
    Since 1968 the racist inspired marijuana program has criminalized and disenfranchised from the vote over 40 million citizens, ruining their lives and the lives of their families just so the status quo can avoid admitting the truth, that the War on Drugs was a political tool used to used to disenfranchise free citizens from the vote. The People resisted by the tens of millions in what is still the largest example of collective civil disobedience in American history, a conspiracy to peacefully resist state tyranny by using cannabis more than ever, folks are burning one right now.

    We smoked some pot in the 60’s and crashed the war in Vietnam, refused to go, saying it was immoral and a lie. We smoked some more and discredited the military industrial complex for two generations. Sharing cannabis lead to sharing consciousness which lead to organization, political activism and a new form of grass roots democracy, direct democracy and in so doing have created a new and powerful political coalition that transcends, spans both political parties, all religions and ideologies. We have proved it.

    The Future ~ Today
    In 2019, The Marijuana Movement is the largest, most diverse and active political movement in the nation. The Movement has come a long way and we have done it with the plebiscite, direct democracy. This populist movement has created a new political estate separate from and in spite of congressional and legislative reforms. The right to use cannabis or more correctly stated the right to individual sovereignty has been opposed by the media, the cops, the legislature, the religions and all social institutions. We are on a roll and any politician who wants to win will have to support an end to the marijuana oppression. The political power of the pot movement can kill or make alive. Florida is a prime example.

    The Marijuana Movement won Florida with over 71 percent of the vote on a Constitutional Amendment passed by plebiscite. It was a landslide victory coalition that Hillary and the Dims ignored. We would have carried Hillary if she had come out with a full throated position to end the racist pot laws. She refused. She only lost by a few votes, she lost because she did not acknowledge the voice of the people concerning marijuana. The current Democratic Presidential candidates all have some sort of pro pot position because that is the only juice of political life left in the system.

    Bernie Sanders popularity was derived in a large part because of his semi pro pot position, that is why the young folk supported him but not the only reason. You see the Marijuana Movement has an entire Agenda, we really like the idea of Sharing and Governing ourselves. The Marijuana Movement is saying that we can govern ourselves and that Individual is Sovereignty and not the Government Control. This is the old idea of ‘Consent of the Governed’ and the foundation of our exceptionalism.

    Cannabis and Foreign Policy, Cannabis could be used to solve today’s political and economic problems; once we restore the same attitude towards hemp that our forefathers had, we will be able to use Cannabis policy to cure radical racism and poverty will real opportunity. Here are two excerpts from my book, Hard Seed showing the potential of free market hemp, jobs, peace and prosperity.

    The Election of 2020 will be very close with a small number of votes determining the future, cannabis will pick the winners. Cannabis will be on the ballot and we will support any candidate willing to support our righteous cause. The movement can swing the election by over 10 points in any state of the Union. The next President of the United States will smoke marijuana in the Rose Garden while announcing the coming of the Year of Jubilee and the adoption of Universal Birthright, a claim to a share of the natural resources as the 34th Amendment, enshrining economic rights by agreement.

    The first Cannabis President since George Washington is on their way to the White House with an Agenda based on agreement, cooperation and a sense of empowerment by sharing our Natural Inheritance. It is the fulfillment of many, many, Dreams, and if you ask the folks in Colorado and California they will tell you that it feels almost like it was 1776 all over again.

    • Alkholos

      If given a choice of whether to fire up a bowl and chill, or go out and do one’s civic duty, the stoner will skip voting to get high or “medicate.” Don’t believe it because of the obvious importance? Check out Shel Silverstein’s “I Got Stoned and I Missed It.” No amount of scholarly erudition and research will change that.

      • Joe

        I smoke every day and I have voted in every election since I was 18 so if it’s important to them a “stoner” will get out and vote not every stoner is some lazy sloth I have a full time manual labor job.

      • Joshua Jason Molloy

        Be four my stupid decision got me this temp. felony I went out and voted (often stoned). When my fine is paid & felony lowered, I’ll be voting again ( probably stoned). That is the b.s. thinking that kept pot in chains this long.

    • Time4truthandreality

      The 2020 election is going to be decided based on a lot of things that people should not necessarily have to be focusing on in this day and age, however marijuana laws will not be one of these issues! It’s all but decriminalized in so many places and viewed as such a non-issue even by most police nowadays, that people are just not being adversely affected by it anymore

  • Davy Crockett

    I want a candidate who is pro pot, pro middle class and pro union no matter the age

    • Stephen Buckley

      You got one with Trump. Fired Sessions. next

  • Bob Smoker Sacheli

    It dont matter what they think .
    Trump will have a second term

  • bigblue52

    At this point, I would like to see a candidate at least be willing to decriminalize small amounts at the Federal level. Someone that has lbs. of weed are obviously doing more than just smoking it. Moderation people.

  • Stop_being_lied_to

    I don’t know if you’re uninformed or intentionally misleading – but President Trump is in favor of, and has said publicly that he would sign federal legalization. Although he prefers states decide for themselves – as obama did with marriage equality – he will sign legislation ending the federal ban. Please keep the truth front and center, and leave partisan disinformation to the establishment media.
    Thank you.

    • gg

      Then why hasn’t Trump signed federal legalization ?

      • smokysams

        Because none has cleared the House and Senate. Nothing has been brought to his desk.

    • Alkholos

      It’s important to note that Mr. Obama was against same-sex marriage until pressured to change his mind by his teenage daughter, whom he recognized as smarter and wiser than himself. Prior to that revelation, Mr. Obama was just another anti-gay hater like his pal Louis Farrakhan. His posture and diction was impeccable, though.

    • Steve SanFrancisco

      Andrew Yang for President 2020, currently Yang in DNC debates for the primary where the DNC hopes to silence yang like they did Bernie 4 years ago.

      Yang, if elected promises to legalize weed, free low level non-violent drug crime prisoners, AND give them a high five and apology for their hate filled convictions. Also, he’s going to give every american, including the recently released from jail pot smokers, $1000/month so they don’t have to steal or break the law to survive. To get the money for giving every american a $1000/month “Freedom Dividend”, he plans to tax robots, automation and other job takers in our economy who displace human workers.

      Also, if Andrew Yang doesn’t get elected, there is a free market, non-government plan to solve poverty that works similar to his political plan that has to be passed in an election. With the free market plan, there are some changes, but it works with or without government to give price discounts to ever poor American while raising the prices on every rich American at the same time. Google #hOEP to

      I upvote you comment and follow you. Stop being lied to.

    • TexasToker

      If that’s what you believe go to NORML’s website to view the 2020 presidential hopefuls and their current views! Trump & old man Biden are the only ones who ARENT for legalization!!

  • timedonkey

    what happened to my very on point comment? come on ….

  • Douglas A. Roehrig

    Andrew Yang said he would high five those that are no longer convicted on 4/20!

  • Favabeanoo

    Me vote for socialist, no way, no how, none of these.

  • Coni

    I think Biden will come around… sadly think he is the only one who can beat dump…I do love Mayor Pete, and Kamala

  • bradstreet21

    Confused politicians say WHAT?

  • Favabeanoo

    No vote no way no how for socialists; they’re bent on destroying this nation.

  • Me Very Messy

    I don’t know how John Hikenlooper got on the list of candidates for legalization, the last I heard was that he thought the government should slow down and research the issue before jumping in to federal legalization. He was Governor of Colorado, but said he thought the nation should slow down until more was known about the effects of legalization.

  • loonpt

    Trump has said emphatically that he SUPPORTS the medical use of cannabis and that it absolutely should be legal for medical use everywhere. He has said that it should be a state by state decision for recreational use.

    Please don’t vote for some Democrat toolbag on this issue, unless it is Tulsi Gabbard.

    The entire leftist platform is based on theft and violence, try being a libertarian.

  • YearofAction

    We can contact our preferred presidential candidate about demonstrating their fidelity to our Constitution by carefully descheduling cannabis at the federal level:

    Since you are prepared to take the Presidential oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, I urge you to encourage Congress to invoke Section 5 of the 14th Amendment to specifically reconstruct the current malformed federal definition of marijuana in the way that restores, and protects, the exclusive Section 1 privileges and immunities of citizens to grow the versatile and valuable renewable natural resource that is the plant Cannabis sativa L., as well as the 9th and 10th Amendment rights of people to carefully use cannabis.

    This reconstructed definition reveals the currently adumbrated meaning of marijuana by clearly describing how marijuana itself is actually derived from cannabis, and by explicitly preserving the legitimate federal prohibitions that control the undesired proliferation of marijuana, thereby carefully descheduling cannabis to re-activate the established rights, privileges and immunities of citizens to grow and carefully use the descheduled cannabis plant:

    The term “marijuana” means all parts of the smoke produced by the combustion of the plant Cannabis sativa L. which is, as are the viable seeds of such plant, prohibited to be grown by or sold by any publicly traded corporation or subsidiary company, and such smoke is prohibited to be inhaled by any child or by any person bearing any firearm, as is the intake of any part or any product of such plant containing more than 0.3% THC by weight unless prescribed to such child by an authorized medical practitioner.

    Reconstructing the malformed federal definition of marijuana in this way that upholds our Constitution will legislatively override the longstanding federal misconstruction that marijuana means cannabis, as interpreted and enforced by the DEA, to which the other federal agencies defer. It will restrain States from maliciously misconstruing federal marijuana law. It will reinforce the Well Regulated Militia Clause of the 2nd Amendment. It will automatically restore banking privileges to local businesses engaged in the commerce of descheduled cannabis. It will oblige corporations to outsource their supplies of cannabis from citizens competing in the supply-side of a diversified cannabis market, and also permit corporations to develop quality products from cannabis, while precluding corporations from enticing children to “smoke marijuana”.

    Although this reconstructed definition does not remove the Schedule 1 status of marijuana itself, it does allow the cannabinoids from descheduled cannabis to be studied, to determine whether the adulterated medical value that marijuana derives from cannabis is sufficient to deschedule or reschedule marijuana.

    In terms of our U.S. heritage, this reconstructed definition will help to prevent misconstruction or abuse of the Constitution’s powers, extend the ground of public confidence in the Government, and best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution, as well as establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, by adhering to the self-evident truths that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, and that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    Will you do this?

  • breh

    And an even better rebuttal! You certainly showed him. Bravo. Have a participation trophy snowflake. Since socialism is so wonderful, move to a socialist country please. But that’s right, none of you ever will. Wonder why.

  • Potter Emmons

    The left will say anything and do Nothing.
    If they find themselves in power again you may see a renewed effort at full criminalization.
    In all seriousness they need everybody paying big taxes support unconstitutional programs you can’t do that if people are laying around smoking weed doing nothing.
    Business needs workers to make things.
    As long as the Federal government is going to stand down we should see slow movement toward normalization and legalization nationally implementation of laws regarding minors just like with alcohol or cigarettes.
    No matter the candidate deep state will exert its will unless Trump breaks up the elitists and closes most federal agencys and outlawing labor unions we may never see full legalization.
    No matter what all you kids think the Democrats will not legalize drugs if anything they will re criminalize all drugs is it just doesn’t pay the damn bills nothing aying around to steal on the other hand when capitalism is Fully in play and big business sees that it’s a profit-making commodity and their Workforce is Not Negativly Affected because of its use they will in fact Legalize It Normalize it.
    All you damn kids think you’re so damn smart and you’re not, tell us our system discriminates or hates or whatever bla bla bla It Does not wake up and smell the coffee and cannabis or watch your shit burn when the anarchists (spoiled undisciplined youth their parents possibly even their grandparents) are burning shit telling them don’t burn my shit ain’t going to get you anywhere but your stuff burnt.
    Communism sucks ask a former communist who’s escaped to this country they will splain it to you.

    • GTG

      …yeah…I agree…and stay off our lawns, too!

  • Drobkick867

    Imbeciles to the man. You realize the Apaches wont even shoot them? They kill ’em with rocks…

  • The Federalist Outlook is better than nothing and Trump already agreed to it publicly. It mandates Federal decriminalization. States cannot implement it unless the Feds are barred by law from interfering. They go hand in hand.

    With the Democratic track record of lying and failing to make good on campaign promises, Trump is the only electable candidate that is clear on the issue.
    It will be Trump v Biden. Trump is better.

  • Time4truthandreality

    It’s interesting to me that people like Cory Booker and Kamala Harris are able to take the position and acknowledge that the war on drugs is a failure, too many people have been arrested,convicted and had their lives devastated by laws that (just a couple years later in some cases) are now viewed as ridiculous and laughable, and everyone is in favor of expungement, re-sentencing etc. So in the cases of people who have unconstitutionally and illegally had their 2nd amendment rights trampled over and stripped away for these types of convictions as well as other ridiculous laws that are still in place and not in the spotlight but are being used to unlawfully disarm the people from owning and possessing what is not just a constitutionally protected right, but is superseded as a human/natural god given right of self preservation and defense the second you are born onto this planet. It should be interesting and viewed/analyzed very critically to see what they claim to feel about these individuals now having their 2nd amendment rights completely and unequivocally restored….should make for real entertainment watching the uncomfortable squirming while they attempt to justify the continued restrictions in that area and others that align with their party lines and the typical bullshit identity politics of today

  • Government with politics and cannabis.. hmmmmm