Washington's Bill to Legalize Marijuana Gains Key Support


This November, the citizens of the state of Washington will vote on whether or not to, essentially, legalize marijuana. I-502 seeks to decriminalize possession of weed weighing under one ounce and would set up a number of state-run “pot shops” that would heavily tax the product in a method to increase state revenue. The bill is controversial (obviously), but yesterday received key support from 16 state lawmakers who now endorse the bill

The 16 politicians are all Democrats and represent a mix of state senators and representatives. Included are representatives from Washington’s biggest city, Seattle. Not amongst the 16 but having previously endorsed I-502 are Seattle’s mayor, city council members, and city attorney.

If passed, I-502 could raise $560 million a year, which would be used to help fund health care.

One key supporter of I-502, Rep. Roger Goodman, addressed the issue of a strict stance of marijuana DUI’s present in the initiative, which is one of its major criticisms. Goodman assures said that this drawback, which could essentially criminalize driving for the state’s medical marijuana patients, could be remedied by the State Legislature. Time will tell how the federal government would react to this law if it is passed.

Below is a list of the 16 lawmakers that support I-502:

The lawmakers who endorsed I-502 today:

Rep. Sherry Appleton (D-23)
Sen. Sharon Nelson (D-34)
Sen. Maralyn Chase (D-32)
Rep. Jamie Pedersen (D-43)
Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson (D-36)
Sen. Margarita Prentice (D-11)
Rep. Hans Dunshee (D-44)
Rep. Chris Reykdal (D-22)
Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon (D-34)
Rep. Mary Helen Roberts (D-21)
Rep. Roger Goodman (D-45)
Rep. Cindy Ryu (D-32)
Rep. Bob Hasegawa (D-11)
Sen. Adam Kline (D-37)
Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles (D-36)
Rep. Luis Moscoso (D-1)

[Via The Seattle Times]

Does I-502 have a chance of passing in Washington. If it does, will the government allow marijuana to be legal in Washington?

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