MNGOP guv hopefuls strike more liberal tone on marijuana reform than Mark Dayton
When it comes to medical marijuana -- or any relaxing of pot laws whatsoever -- Gov. Mark Dayton has said, "I don't think we need another drug operating in our society."
He's also said he wouldn't sign a bill legalizing marijuana unless it has the support of law enforcement, which seems about as likely as me finding part-time work as a supermodel if this blogging thing doesn't work out.
You might assume Republicans would be even less in favor of marijuana reform than Dayton, but in some cases, you'd be wrong. For instance, consider what the leading 2014 MNGOP gubernatorial hopefuls had to say about the topic during a recent candidate forum in Rochester.
Medical marijuana is one of the rare issues of the Capitol that does not break down along party lines. That became evident during a recent Republican gubernatorial forum in Rochester. The five candidates were asked whether they would be willing to sign a bill legalizing marijuana. Hibbing teacher Rob Farnsworth, Sen. Dave Thompson and Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson all said "yes." Wayzata businessman Scott Honour and former House Speaker Kurt Zellers said "no."
As we told you about earlier today, over the weekend, Johnson won an MNGOP straw poll of the leading 2014 Republican gubernatorial candidates. His statement at the Rochester forum was a slight departure from what he said about medical pot during a MinnPost interview earlier this year:
In any event, with medical marijuana supporters planning a big push for a legalization bill during the upcoming session, pot reform could become a major topic during next's year gubernatorial campaign. And unless Dayton has a change of heart (or Johnson reverts his position back to something akin to "I don't know"), ganja-friendly Minnesotans might find themselves in the unusual position of agreeing with Republicans. (Some Republicans, at least -- others, of course, are less liberal about marijuana.)
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