2016 will be the year that presidential condidates have to take a firm stance on marijuana legalization. Key states for the general election such as California, Arizona, Florida, and Nevada will all plant to have marijuana measures on their ballot as well.
Next year will bring the first presidential election since Colorado and Washington implemented regulations for the sale of marijuana. This has already brought in tens of millions in tax revenue. Marijuana, both at the state and federal level, could be a deciding factor in how citizens cast their vote.
In Colorado’s 2012 elections, voters weren’t too concerned with the specifics about pot, but they were very interested in how the money would be spent. Suburban mothers were won over because they were promised that a substantial amount of taxed revenue from marijuana would go towards schools.
States are already pursuing plenty of different measures regarding marijuana. California wants to have it legalized for recreational use, whereas Nevada wants to legalize it for possession up to an ounce. Those who are currently leading the change are the Drug Policy Alliance, Marijuana Policy Project and many more.
Medical marijuana is now legal in Iowa and even New Hampshire is working on a bill that would decriminalise it. Many advocates have hopes that this would leave room for a full legislation by 2017.
There isn’t one major presidential candidate that has announced their full support of pot legalisation, but Republican Senator Rand Paul co-sponsored the bill introduced earlier this month which would reclassify marijuana federally and block federal laws from interfering with state legalization measures.