Alas, we’re down to the final two 2020 Presidential candidates: Donald Trump and Joe Biden. Along the way, we lost big names like Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Mike Bloomberg. Once again, it’s a final face-off between one Democrat (Biden) and one Republican (Trump). While you may not agree with our political views, we feel it necessary to review each candidate’s final stance on marijuana before the election wraps up.
First things first, we know politics can often bring up sensitivities on both sides. Please note that we will not try to convince you to vote either way. Our plan for today is simple: review the final thoughts of Biden and Trump on marijuana. What do they have in store should they be elected? What does the future of marijuana look like with Biden or Trump in the Oval Office?
Federal Legalization In 2020
We hate to say this, but federal legalization of marijuana this year seems highly unlikely. Neither Biden nor Trump has federal legalization at the top of their to-do list. It’s a shame, really, since we could have supported Sanders or Warren as both previous candidates supported legal weed in all 50 states.
Wavering Stances On Both Sides
Surely, we don’t have to tell you that politicians speak out of both sides of their mouths. They lie. They bend the truth for the sake of votes, which counts for both Donald Trump and Joe Biden. In the past, when asked about their viewpoints on marijuana, they often flip-flopped their answers. Here’s a recent example with Biden.
In a March 2020 interview, the former Vice President mistakenly said that he would “legalize” marijuana, quickly correcting himself to clarify that he would simply decriminalize possession of a certain amount. “There is evidence that we have to do some more study on the impact on mental acuity,” he added, “I would decriminalize and I would provide for the ability of the researchers to get in and make sure we got it right this time.”
As for Trump, we found similar mixed messages. Prior to his Presidency, he expressed support for medical marijuana as well as for allowing states to decide whether to legalize or not. But then everything changed. As President, Trump perpetuated the War on Drugs, a campaign that has imprisoned countless Americans on drug charges (including marijuana).
What Donald Trump and Joe Biden Agree On…
Once in a blue moon, a Democrat and a Republican agree on something. Both candidates support further research on marijuana but will not further legalize it until supportive studies come through. For example, Trump believes marijuana hurts your IQ. No, really, that’s a direct quote. “In Colorado, they have more accidents [because of legal marijuana],” he said. “It does cause an IQ problem.”
To the press, Biden expressed his concerns that marijuana could (and likely would) lead to harder, more dangerous drug use. “I still believe it’s a gateway drug. I’ve spent a lot of my life as chairman of the Judiciary Committee dealing with this. I think it would be a mistake to legalize,” he told ABC News in 2010. “There’s not nearly been enough evidence that has been acquired as to whether or not it is a gateway drug.”
If Trump Becomes President…
We’ve already lived through four years of Trump’s presidency and not a lot has changed in the marijuana department. As he once said, it’s up to states and their governors to legalize weed if they so desire. If re-elected, we don’t expect much progress in legalization or decriminalization.
If Biden Becomes President…
In that March 2020 interview we mentioned earlier, Biden expressed his plan to decriminalize marijuana, hopefully in all 50 states. “Any conviction at all for marijuana now or in the future or in the past, your record should be wiped clean. It’s not something that is going to send anybody to jail.” Progress!!!
COVID-19’s Impact On Marijuana
Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, we undoubtedly have larger fish to fry than the matter of marijuana legalization. Politics aside, we have to think of the economy and how to open it. We have to restructure healthcare so that everyone can get tested (and eventually treated once there’s a vaccine). Trump and Biden might put marijuana legalization on the backburner as we fight through this virus.
Who Will You/Did You Vote For?
In an effort to flatten the coronavirus curve and abide by social distancing, many states pushed back their voting dates into the summer—but not all of them! Some of you may have already voted. If you want to share, tell us who you voted for or who you plan to vote for! Or, maybe, you didn’t vote at all if Donald Trump and Joe Biden feel like too much of a loss for this country. We’re not here to judge or change your mind.