New Jersey Governor ‘Open-Minded’ On Decriminalizing All Drugs

MJ moment

The governor of New Jersey said on Monday that he’s “open” to the idea of decriminalizing possession of all currently illicit drugs—though his focus remains set for now on implementing marijuana legalization in the state. During a press briefing, Gov. Phil Murphy (D) was asked where he stands on ending criminalization for simple possession, as Oregon has done following voter approval of a reform initiative in November. “Am I open-minded to further decriminalization? I suppose so. But I think we’ve taken the biggest step, and that is marijuana,” he said, referring to the enactment of a legalization bill that the legislature passed after voters overwhelmingly approved a referendum on the policy change. “I’m open-minded to hear their arguments [about broader decriminalization],” Murphy said. “But I think we’ve taken a big step and I want to get that step embedded—that’s my personal opinion—and get this right before we consider taking further steps.” Murphy’s public openness to considering removing criminal penalties for possession of all drugs is the latest example of how broad decriminalization beyond cannabis—an issue once quickly dismissed out of hand—is gaining greater acceptance among politicians. Oregon approved a historic measure to end criminalization for simple possession via citizen initiative, but lawmakers in California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Missouri, New York, Rhode Island, Washington State and Virginia have also introduced drug policy reform bills during the 2021 session—some dealing only with psychedelics but others that similarly call for comprehensive decriminalization. A Republican in Iowa, one of a growing number of GOP lawmakers playing a direct role in advancing drug reform, introduced a bill to remove psilocybin from the list of controlled substances and filed another piece of legislation to let seriously ill patients use psychedelic mushrooms, LSD, DMT and other drugs. In New York, lawmakers are considering both a measure to decriminalize drugs and a separate bill that would decriminalize psilocybin and…

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Source : New Jersey Governor ‘Open-Minded’ On Decriminalizing All Drugs

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