New York's Cuomo Teases Marijuana Legalization

New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo once again hints at the possibility for the state to legalize marijuana in 2021.

The United States just underwent an enormous green wave of marijuana legalization, occurring in Montana, New Jersey, South DakotaArizona, and Mississipi, who all voted to support some form of marijuana legalization. In fact, psilocybin mushrooms were even legalized for therapeutic purposes in Oregon on the same day.

In response to these huge legislative gains on the cannabis front, New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo suggested in a radio interview with WAMC's Alan Chartock that New York is "ripe" for marijuana legalization.

Admittedly, this isn't the first time that Cuomo has hinted at the recreational legalization of cannabis in New York, and in fact, the Governor has done this for several years now – so his recent statements should be taken with this in mind.

We previously wrote about how COVID-19 and the subsequent economic damage could provide the perfect justification for the state to legalize the plant, as we've seen with the recent successes felt in Illinois, who just surpassed half a billion dollars in tax revenues generated from the plant.

Unfortunately, at the time, New York's 2020 cannabis legalization efforts came up short, though Cuomo appears to still believe that now is the time to legalize cannabis.

In his radio interview, the Governor said:

"I think this year is ripe [for legalization] because this state is going to be desperate for funding, even with Biden, even with stimulus, even with everything else, we're still gonna need funding and it's also the right policy, so I think we get this done."

The Governor continued, alluding to the recent successes of New Jersey, stating:

"New Jersey did it on the ballot, which in retrospect I think was probably the faster way."

"I think the pressure is gonna be on because we're going to need the money so badly and you have such a gap now, I think it's gonna be an easier conversation."

Whether these statements actually come to fruition will remain to be seen, however as we've mentioned, Cuomo's track record on cannabis has been more talk than action.

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Louis O'Neill
Louis O'Neill

Louis is a writer based in Sydney with a focus on social and political issues. Having interviewed local politicians and entrepreneurs, Louis now focuses on cannabis culture, legislation & reform.

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