October 3, 2018

CHANGE? Texas Governor Greg Abbott Opens His Mind to Marijuana Decriminalization… Kinda.

For the past three years, Governor Greg Abbott has been viewed as a primary hurdle to rewriting Texas’ draconian marijuana laws. So on Friday, when he revealed he’s “open” to the idea of reducing criminal penalties for low-level pot possession during a debate, activists cheered it as a “green light” for cannabis reform ahead of the 2019 legislative session.

Still, Abbott’s version of marijuana reform pales in comparison to that of his party, which this summer voted to support eliminating criminal penalties for small-time possession altogether. Not to mention the majority of Texas voters, who, according to the most recent polling, support legalizing cannabis. That leaves many marijuana reformers in the familiar and awkward position of both lauding the governor’s new stance while also arguing that it doesn’t go far enough.

Enough of our 50 laboratories of democracy are experimenting with various levels of legalization or decriminalization that no state needs to be in a huge rush.

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