In a Thursday interview with Time, Vermont Gov. Democratic Peter Shumlin said that “enlightened states” will get behind common sense marijuana legalization.
“The war on drugs has failed us miserably when it comes to marijuana policy, which is why so many states are by referendum legalizing marijuana,” he explained. “I’m hoping that Vermont will be the first state that does it legislatively because we have learned from the states that have made mistakes doing it by referendum.”
Four states — Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, Washington — and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational marijuana use through referendum,which Shumlin claims has led to adverse side-effects, specifically children in Colorado getting their hands on marijuana edibles.
Shumlin conceded that he doesn’t want “Vermonters smoking pot at all,” but is “always surprised that we talk about pot as if we don’t have legal alcohol and legal tobacco sales.”
“Government doesn’t want you doing any of those things in excess but to continue to pretend that by outlawing marijuana, you’re keeping it out of the hands of kids and adults,” he added. That “is a level of denial that as governor — I can’t live in La La Land.”
“There is no question that the war on drugs has failed when it comes to marijuana policy, that America is going to move to a more sensible policy state by state. And I think the more enlightened states are trying to get ahead of this one.”
Shumlin ended the interview by stating that he, like Sen. Bernie Sanders, had smoked Marijuana in the past.
“I was in Vermont in the ’70s. We inhaled.”