Minnesota Governor Urges Lawmakers To Pursue Marijuana Legalization Amid Budget Talks

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The governor of Minnesota on Tuesday implored the legislature to look into legalizing marijuana as a means to boost the economy and promote racial justice. During a briefing focused on his budget proposal for the 2022-23 biennium, Gov. Tim Walz (D) was asked whether he is open to allowing sports betting in the state to generate tax revenue. He replied he wasn’t closing the door on that proposal, but said he is more interested in seeing lawmakers “take a look at recreational cannabis.” Not only would tax revenue from adult-use marijuana “dwarf” those collected through sports betting, he said, but legalization would also help address “the equity issue and, quite honestly, the racial impact of our cannabis laws.” Watch the governor discuss marijuana legalization below:  “I will say this, I will certainly leave open that possibility. Our neighboring states have done both of those things,” Walz said of legalizing sports gambling and cannabis. “I obviously recognize that that’s not a 100 percent slam dunk for people, and they realize that there’s cost associated with both. But my message would be is, I don’t think this is the time for me to say I’m shutting the door on anything.” Walz did not include a request to legalize through his budget, however, as governors in some other states have. The Minnesota governor did say in 2019, however, that he was directing state agencies to prepare to implement reform in anticipation of legalization passing. Earlier this month, the House majority leader said he would again introduce a bill to legalize marijuana in the new session. And if Senate Republicans don’t go along with the reform, he said he hopes they will at least let voters decide on cannabis as a 2022 ballot measure. Heading into the 2020 election, Democrats believed they had a shot…

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Source : Minnesota Governor Urges Lawmakers To Pursue Marijuana Legalization Amid Budget Talks

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