Democrats and Republicans may be divided on quite a lot of main coverage points, however Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) stated on Thursday that ending the drug battle and legalizing marijuana are more and more standing out as exceptions to hyper-partisanship in Congress.
The congresswoman made the purpose throughout a digital city corridor alongside hashish reform ally Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), stating that since she took workplace, it has been encouraging to see members on each side of the aisle come collectively on points regarding “civil rights policy and civil liberties,” together with ending “drug prohibition laws.”
“We’ve been able to propose solutions on a wide spectrum towards decriminalization, towards legalization, and that is increasingly becoming a position that more Republicans are amenable to,” she stated.
For instance, her spending invoice modification to divert $5 million in funding from the Drug Enforcement Administration to an opioid remedy program was authorized with out opposition within the House final yr, Ocasio-Cortez stated.
“That’s defund before defund became a widespread demand that we heard this year—and Republicans supported it,” she stated, referencing progressive calls to defund regulation enforcement amid protests over police killings of black Americans. “So there are some areas where you can find common ground.”
Blumenauer additionally stated on the event that “part of why we are fighting so hard to eliminate the failed prohibition on cannabis is because that’s been a tool that’s been used against people of color in particular that has horrific consequences and helps fuel that prison pipeline that has wreaked such havoc on our communities.”
To that end, Ocasio-Cortez stated that, past federally legalizing hashish, it is vital for lawmakers to be certain that any regulated markets that emerge are structured in a method that encourages participation by communities most damage underneath prohibition.
“There are different ways that we can go about legalizing cannabis in the United States, and you can go about it in a way that concentrates power in a [Big Agriculture] way that concentrates power in big banks and that cuts out small mom and pops,” she stated. “And then there’s another path towards legalization where everyday people and especially the black and brown communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the war on drugs can be at the front of the line of enjoying the economic benefits of legalization.”
“I think we’re just so past due to make sure that we’re legalizing cannabis in the United States and that we’re expunging people’s records from the absolutely unjust war on drugs,” the congresswoman stated. “It is an incredible priority.”
This article has been republished from Marijuana Moment underneath a content-sharing settlement. Read the unique article here.
Featured picture by Gina Coleman/Weedmaps