Biden-Sanders Task Force Considering Cannabis Legalization Recommendation

Even though former vice president Joe Biden opposes cannabis legalization, members of his criminal justice task force are discussing the possibility. The majority of this group – which is made up of advisors Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders had appointed – are in support of ending the prohibition of cannabis.

Advocates of cannabis legalization have been hoping this group of advisors would recommend Biden adopt the policy platform. This could help him in the upcoming months preceding the November election.

As some of these advisors have publicly spoken about the issue, there’s a new report from Politico that seems to confirm the group is actively considering making a formal recommendation regarding the policy change.

“Multiple people said marijuana policy has been discussed on the criminal justice panel, one of the policy groups of the unity task force,” the outlet claims. “Sanders appointees have advocated for legalization. Some Biden appointees personally support legalizing pot and have debated putting the policy in the panel’s recommendations to the former vice president, according to two people familiar with its deliberations.”

Most of the panel members have gone on record favoring legalization in the past. This includes Tennessee Sen. Raumesh Akbari (D), the former federal prosecutor Chiraag Bains, former Attorney General Eric Holder, Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Walker, and former Acting Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta.

Bains, appointed to the task force by Sanders, claims, “There’s an opportunity to advance a really bold agenda on criminal justice. This is part of envisioning a completely different future, not returning to a pre-Trump era. I say that as someone who served proudly in the Obama administration. We just have to be much more aggressive about rooting out systemic racism and injustice in the legal system.”

He also told Politico that Biden should “end the War on Drugs, including by legalizing marijuana.”

Could a change in stance on this policy give Biden the support he needs to take office? What do you think?

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