The race for the 2020 election in the US will be gearing up soon enough, as Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) announced recently that she wants to run for the Commander-in-Chief post at the White House. Her plan to fully legalize cannabis if she takes office has many eyebrows raised in different directions across the nation.
The question of cannabis legalization on a federal and state level in the United States is a prickly one. And whereas it would have been mostly a moot point in previous decades, cannabis is a hot topic these days and one that voters are actually interested in. Sen. Gillibrand made news headlines recently when she promised, via a Medium post to make cannabis legalization, “a top priority of my presidency,” she wrote.
In the plan, Gillibrand said she would legalize cannabis state-by-state and federally if elected. She also said she would expunge all non-violent cannabis convictions across the nation, as well as forcing private and federal health insurers to cover medical cannabis for patients.
Moreover, Gillibrand claims she would immediately deschedule cannabis totally and allow pot businesses to access financial services like banking and credit card systems. She also intends to put a tax on legal cannabis sales to fund programs that would educate people about cannabis after so many decades of prohibition. The Senator spoke in her post about the importance of “creating a regulatory system that protects patients, boosts the economy, and normalizes the industry.”
In the post, which garnered many thousands of views and likes within days, Gillibrand wrote, “As president, I will immediately deschedule marijuana as a controlled substance, and start working to not only heal the damage done by racist drug laws but tap into the medical and economic opportunity that legal marijuana offers,” she said.
Gillibrand also took issue with the opioid epidemic that’s plaguing America today. She has stated on more than one occasion that cannabis is an excellent alternative to opioid drugs and even helps patients who are addicted to kick the habit. She also intends to give small and medium-sized cannabis businesses a helping hand in the form of “technical assistance” to help with the transition from prohibition to legalization.
In the same post, Gillibrand said, “With my national marijuana legalization plan, we can begin to dismantle the institutional racism in our criminal justice system, open up important new medical and economic horizons, and lift up communities who need and deserve a fair shot at opportunity,” she wrote.
While Gillibrand’s cannabis legalization plan has been welcomed with open arms, not everyone is so naive about Gillibrand’s agenda here. In typical Democrat fashion, Gillibrand is trying to make the cannabis leglaization question all about systematic racism and less about helping patients in need. Both of these topics are important in require serious consideration.
She also wrote, “Fundamentally, whether adults use marijuana is a matter of privacy, and we should treat marijuana as a major economic opportunity and revenue source.” That’s a fact that even President Trump agreed with, at least partially, when he enacted the Farm Bill 2018 allowing the cultivation of industrial hemp in the US.
Whether a political stunt or not, there’s little question for many people when it comes to Gillibrand’s position on cannabis. While tobacco, alcohol, and prescription drugs are killing tens of thousands of people annually, cannabis is a natural herb that can treat a wide range of medical conditions.
It remains to be seen whether Gillibrand will be able to knock President Trump out of the White House in 2020, but her support from a broad cross-section of Americans when it comes to the issue of cannabis is undoubtedly growing daily.