NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws has released its 2018 Gubernatorial Scorecard. Only twenty-four US governors received a passing grade of ‘C’ or higher (14 Democrats, 9 Republicans, and 1 Independent). Only two US governors, both Democrats, received an ‘A,’ and fifteen governors received a ‘B’ grade (9 Democrats, 5 Republicans, and 1 Independent). And seven governors received a ‘C’ grade (4 Republicans and 3 Democrats).
Of the remaining governors with failing grades, nineteen received a ‘D’ grade (18 Republicans and 1 Democrat), four received a failing ‘F’ grade (all Republicans), and three received no grade because of insufficient data.
Of the 31 Republican U.S. governors receiving a letter grade, only nine received a passing grade of ‘C’ or higher (34 percent), while Democratic governors faired better, 14 of them received a passing grade of ‘C’ or higher (93 percent).
In order to come up with a grade, NORML uses an extensive database and assigns a letter grade based upon their comments and voting records specific to matters of marijuana policy.
Commenting on the results, NORML Executive Director Erik Altieri stated, “While federal officials tend to receive most of the scrutiny in the fight for marijuana law reform, it is not just members of Congress who deserve our attention. In fact, with the majority of marijuana-related campaigns decided on the state level, it is our nation’s governors who often hold the key to our success or failure.”
The results of this year’s report card are very similar to last year’s.
The report underscores the fact that voters’ views on marijuana policy are typically more progressive than the views held by the highest elected officials in their states. While 63 percent of Americans support legalizing cannabis, just two Governors have publicly voiced their support for legal cannabis.
“Voters need to push current governors and 2018 gubernatorial candidates to take a proactive and positive stance on marijuana policy,” says Altieri. “Constituents must let their governors know that holding positions on marijuana legalization that are of step with the will of state voters will cost them at the ballot box and that embracing sensible reform policies will increase their support among voters. Look to New Jersey as an example. The exit of anti-drug zealot Chris Christie and the election of pro-legalization Phil Murphy has changed the entire tenor of the debate. Already, the state is moving to expand and reinforce their long-suffering medical marijuana program, and his very election catapulted the topic of full legalization to the top of this year’s legislative priorities list.”
To read NORML’s full report, please visit: http://norml.org/us-governors
New Poll Shows US Voters’ Support For Legalization At Its Highest
According to a new national poll by Quinnipiac University, 93 percent of US voters support the legalization of medical marijuana, as authorized by a doctor. 70 percent oppose federal intervention.
The poll’s results show that Americans overwhelmingly support legalization of medical marijuana and oppose federal intervention in states with regulated cannabis programs.
A whopping 74 percent of respondents say they support federal legislation to prohibit the federal government from intervening in states that have enacted marijuana regulatory laws.
NORML’s Political Director, Justin Strekal, commented, “Never in modern history has there existed greater public support for ending the nation’s nearly century-long failed experiment with marijuana criminalization. As this momentum and public pressure continue to build, now is the time for elected officials to find their way to political evolution. We are ready to welcome them to the cause of justice, fairness, and individual liberty.”
“In 2018, NORML members and marijuana reform supporters will be attending town halls, knocking on doors, and making political contributions with every intention of defeating candidates who maintain their reefer madness hysteria as a justification to treat cannabis consumers as second-class citizens,” Strekal added.