Thankfully this guy has no shot of becoming president.
From Daily Mail: Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke unveiled a sweeping marijuana legalization plan Thursday that would provide financial grants to people incarcerated for non-violent crimes and impose taxes on the pot industry.
O’Rourke, who gained notoriety while serving on the El Paso City Council when he pushed a resolution to study legalization, would legalize and tax marijuana and ‘end the war on drugs,’ according to a policy announcement released by his campaign.
‘We need to not only end the prohibition on marijuana, but also repair the damage done to the communities of color disproportionately locked up in our criminal justice system or locked out of opportunity because of the War on Drugs,’ O’Rourke said in a statement.
O’Rourke, who is trailing in the polls and who gained notoriety for his proposed assault weapon buy-back program following the mass shooting in his hometown, would regulate and license the production and distribution of marijuana.
Most of the licenses would go to ‘minority-owned businesses and those disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs,’ he said.
He says he will provide ‘“Drug War Justice Grants” to people ‘formerly incarcerated for nonviolent marijuana offenses in state and federal prison after their release, completely funded by a federal tax on the marijuana industry.’
The move follows bipartisan efforts to find ways to reduce the prison population by focusing on nonviolent offenders and turning back mandatory minimum sentences.
He doesn’t offer specifics on either the size of the tax, or the size of the grants.
The former congressman says it will apply ‘for a period based on time served’ and that the grants will be ‘funded completely by the tax on the marijuana industry.’
Other funds would target drug treatment programs and programs to help former convicts reenter society at large.
O’Rourke wants to support those ‘disproportionately impacted by marijuana arrests’ to help them participate in the marijuana business by providing ‘technical assistance, industry-specific training, access to interest free/low-interest loans, and access to investment financing and legal services.’
O’Rourke wrote at 2011 book about marijuana prohibition, ‘Dealing Death and Drugs,’ and used the issue as part of his campaign to unseat Democratic incumbent former Rep. Silvester Reyes.
He also would bar the feds from using marijuana-related arrests as grounds for deportation of people who came here illegally.
He is promoting the plan this week on a swing through Los Angeles and Oakland. His push comes on a day a Fox news poll has him at 4 per cent nationally, behind three poll leaders: former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Sen. Bernie Sanders.