Trump on Marijuana: If Anyone Can Convince GOP on Legalization, it's the President. In an opinion piece published by the Los Angeles Times, the self-described writer and capitalist Mark Stefanos lays out the reasons why legalization would behoove President Donald Trump.
Basically, it makes great business sense.
"For the same reasons Trump believes we should be buying cars and air-conditioners manufactured domestically," writes Stefanos, "it follows that he should be making every effort to ensure America dominates the global marijuana industry. Americans should be smoking American weed. This requires the government’s ban be lifted so the market can flourish."
Stefanos points to the latest Gallup poll - which show 60% of Americans favor legalization, including 77% of 18- to 34-year-olds. "With some of the weakest approval ratings for an incoming president, he should be looking to capitalize on low-hanging-fruit policies like these."
He says that if legalizing marijuana federally isn’t on Trump’s legislative agenda, it should be.
"And a conservative Congress should back him," writes Stefanos, "It’s politically expedient, fits neatly into Trump’s game plan and there are principled conservative arguments to be made on legalization’s behalf."
While the President Trump on marijuana stance is unclear, he's hinted before that he does believe in states rights to choose to go green. "If his inauguration speech was any indication, Trump is doubling down on populism — and legalizing pot is incredibly popular," says Stefanos.
Unlike the last three presidents, Stefanos points out; "Trump claims he’s never toked. He doesn’t drink, he orders his steak well-done and it’s unlikely anyone will ever pass a blunt to the self-described germaphobe."
The op-ed also dives into why his new Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, isn't a big threat - and why a pro-pot stance wouldn't necessarily upset his political base. "It’s understood he nominated Sessions because they share a tough immigration stance, not necessarily Sessions’ views on drugs.
Trump shouldn’t worry too much about legalization alienating his base because the same Gallup poll that reveals 60% of Americans favor legalization, it also shows that 42% of Republicans support legalization, up from 20% in 2005.
"And if anyone needs convincing, Trump can make the case," says Stefanos.