Republican Presidential Presumptive Nominee Donald Trump has been somewhat cagey about his stance on marijuana. This isn’t surprising, considering that the republican base has long been known for its prohibition and anti drug-use stance.
There are also those republicans however that believe in personal liberty and being left to make their own choices, so it is not unbelievable to consider that Donald Trump may well help marijuana on its way to legalization in the US.
He has previously stated he is ‘100% in favor of medical marijuana’, but has not been so quick to fully support marijuana legalization. That doesn’t particularly make him stand out. The highest ranking politician to call for the legalization of marijuana is still Governor Gary Johnson, standing as the Libertarian candidate for President, almost twenty years after he first became the highest ranking politicians to call for the legalization of marijuana.
Donald Trump has been happy to acknowledge that “in some ways” legalization “is good.”
Trump, when speaking to talking head Bill O’Reilly on Fox News, was asked about his position on the legalization that has happened in Colorado. When pressed about whether he would stop state legalization, Trump backed out of giving a firm answer and said:
“I would, I would really want to think about that one Bill because in some ways, I think it’s good and in other ways, it’s bad.”
He then backed up his non statement by unequivocally supporting medical marijuana. Trump’s uncertainty on the legalization is due to the health aspects, he ignored O’Reilly’s claims about dealers smuggling out of Colorado.
Trump is in a sticky position. To come out and fully support marijuana legalization may stop him from getting a vote from the Republican right, who are still pretty sore over his thorough beating of Ted Cruz in the primary elections. To come out against would certainly cause a backlash in states he might hope to win such as California and Colorado.
Trump is not an idiot, he’s a smart navigator and will be unlikely to take any firm position on legalizing marijuana, leaving it to states to decide. His decision to take no firm stance is likely more about political manoeuvring than any opposition or support for legalization itself.
Trump was originally for legalization in 1990 as the only way to win the War on Drugs but has expressed his reservations about legalization during this campaign.