Beto O’Rourke Would Use Marijuana Taxes To Help Expunge Possession Convictions
On Thursday, Beto O’Rourke updated his campaign platform’s position on cannabis with specific, targeted proposals addressing legalization, taxation and social justice. As a candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, O’Rourke has continued his long-standing fight to end the prohibition of cannabis. On the campaign trail, O’Rourke has called for federal cannabis legalization as part of a wide-ranging package of criminal justice reforms. Now, we have a clearer picture of exactly what he has in mind.
Beto O’Rourke Proposes “Drug War Justice Grants” for Formerly Incarcerated People
Much of Beto O’Rourke’s cannabis platform resembles other candidates’ proposals to federally legalize cannabis. O’Rourke’s plan would apply a federal tax on the marijuana industry, open up access to banks and financial services, work to elevate minority-owned cannabis businesses and invest in rebuilding lives and communities shattered by the drug war.
But it’s Beto’s plan for “Drug War Justice Grants” that distinguishes his proposal from the pack. Under O’Rourke’s plan, a federal marijuana tax would fund grants to help expunge possession convictions, support re-entry programs and directly provide money to those formerly incarcerated for marijuana offenses in state and federal prisons. Federal marijuana tax revenue would also assist those who have been locked