Lawmakers Push For Marijuana Legalization - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Lawmakers Push For Marijuana Legalization

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Some Washington lawmakers are pushing for the legalization of marijuana, saying that the state would reap hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes.

But opponents say that marijuana impairs users and legalizing it may lead to more abuse. One legislator reminded that the drug is still illegal under federal law.

Seattle Democrat Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson says that prohibition of marijuana leads to waste of money in policing and jailing non-violent offenders. She says that states need to lead the change
in the law banning cannabis.

Her bill received a committee hearing Tuesday. Several law enforcement officials and substance abuse counselors lobbied against the bill.

Mercer Island Police Chief Ed Holmes says that marijuana impairs user faster than alcohol and legislators should be mindful of that.
      
      

      
      (Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)
   

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