12 Governors call on congress to pass bill protecting legalized marijuana states

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Last week, Senators Cory Gardner and Elizabeth Warren introduced a bill, called the STATES Act, that would protect states with legalized marijuana from federal government interference, writes Joseph Misulonas.

And now the leaders of those states are calling on Congress to pass it.

12 governors signed a letter written to leaders of Congress calling for the passage of the STATES Act. They noted that their states did not pass these laws without thoughtful and careful consideration, and also noted that they were supported by the citizens of their states. They asked that Congress pass the bill and allow their citizens to enjoy the laws they supported. Unsurprising, the list of governors included the leaders of states who have already legalized recreational marijuana (California, Oregon, Colorado, Alaska, Nevada, Washington and Massachusetts).

But the letter also included signatures from non-legalized states. Governor Phil Murphy from New Jersey, who has advocated for legalized recreational marijuana in his state, signed the letter, as did Democrats Andrew Cuomo from New York and Tom Wolfe from Pennsylvania, neither of whom support recreational marijuana legalization but have stated they oppose federal intervention in states' cannabis laws.

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Perhaps somewhat surprising is that two Republican governors, Governor Doug Burgum from North Dakota and Larry Hogan from Maryland, from non-legal states also signed the letter. Hogan's signature could be explained by his upcoming re-election campaign.

The Republican represents the fairly liberal state of Maryland, and his support of the letter may help him gain some support from moderate Democrats who could help him stay in office.

But Burgum's support doesn't have the same electoral motivation, considering he's not up for re-election until 2020 and won his previous election with 75 percent of the vote.

So will Republicans actually support states' rights, like they claim they do. Or will they continue advocated old-fashioned policies?

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