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Heinrich calls for legalizing pot

Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M

Sen. Martin Heinrich, a Democrat seeking reelection to a second term, just tweeted his support for marijuana legalization.

“It’s time to legalize marijuana,” the senator tweeted.

The senator’s new policy position comes on April 20 – or 4/20 – which has become known as an unofficial national holiday for marijuana enthusiasts.

The New Mexico Democratic Party formally endorsed legalization in March. A week ago, Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller signed a bill decriminalizing marijuana possession. New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, a former prosecutor, is staunchly opposed to legalized weed. And here’s a pretty good summation of where Congress stands on the issue.

In a 2014 interview with me, Heinrich advocated a wait-and-see approach to making pot legal, saying the federal government should wait to see what happened in Washington and Colorado, which had recently legalized the herb.

Heinrich acknowledged in the interview that pot is less dangerous than cocaine, methamphetamine or other hard drugs.

“But I’m also cautious about where we’re going, and before people jump forward and assume they have all the answers on this stuff it would be smart to look at the states that are starting down this road, and to take some time and look at what works and what does not,” he said at the time. “I think we need to be cautious.”

It seems that the experiments in Washington and Colorado, where tax revenues have skyrocketed, have at least in part helped Heinrich make up his mind on the issue.



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