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Will Democrats Talk About Marijuana Policy During Tonight’s Debate?


democratic national convention marijuana harold and kumarThe First Democratic Presidential Debate Is Tonight, Will Candidates Talk About Marijuana Policy?

The long awaited, highly anticipated first Democratic Presidential debate is tonight on CNN (5:30 PST). Marijuana took center stage for a portion of the last Republican debate, with Jeb Bush admitting (and apologizing) that he had consumed marijuana over four decades ago. That led to other candidates expressing their support for marijuana reform, while others used it as an opportunity to spread as much reefer madness as they could muster up.

The Democratic Presidential debate will hopefully see the topic of marijuana covered. Marijuana reform is extremely popular right now, with many key swing states either voting on marijuana reform in 2016, or they already have marijuana reform on the books. Marijuana reform traditionally has been supported more by liberals than conservatives in American politics, so there’s simply no excuse in my opinion that the topic shouldn’t be covered tonight during the Democratic Presidential debate on CNN, and covered extensively.

I think that we will see candidates that are trailing quite a bit come out strongest on this topic because they know it’s an issue that has traction. I think we will see Hillary Clinton say whatever her ‘handlers’ thought was the best position to take for the evening on the topic, claiming that she has ‘evolved’ on this issue, but of course hasn’t done anything to put actions behind her words.

I think the moment that everyone will be on the edge of their seat for when it comes to the topic of marijuana at the debates is if/when Bernie Sanders talks about it. He has hinted at a marijuana reform strategy, but has yet to unveil any details. Bernie has laid a lot of groundwork leading up to such a revealing of a strategy, and I’m wondering if he was saving the particulars for tonight. A debate on CNN with the entire world watching would be a great time to do it, that’s for sure.

What do TWB readers think? Do you think marijuana will come up as a topic at the debate? Is there something in particular that you are looking for from a particular candidate? Get your popcorn ready, and pull up a chair, because I have a feeling that marijuana is going to be front and center for a healthy chunk of the debate, and if so, I can’t wait to hear what the candidates have to say!


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Johnny Green


  1. The politicians think it’s a joke. I don’t think they realize that the candidate that says “no more” of this nonsense will get the votes. They still think it’s the 90’s where they can avoid it…it will be their mistake.

  2. Well they just did and Bernie is for it being legal. Hillary is for med marij and believes states should recr marij

  3. saynotohypocrisy on

    which is why they want as little discussion as possible and we want as much honest discussion as possible

  4. The first Democrat debate is starting, and I’m getting ready to light a LEGAL (at least in my state, for the moment) joint and watch it. I never thought I’d see the day, but here it is, progress at last. I am not wild about any of the candidate’s positions on cannabis, but I am pretty sure additional progress is more likely with any of them than a Republican president (except Rand Paul, who has zero chance of winning the nomination.)

  5. Absolutely agreed — though I won’t be surprised if it isn’t given much time inside the debate. I will not vote for a candidate who doesn’t acknowledge the need for legalization, and hell yes it’s about freedom, social justice, and an important step to reduce the prison-industrial complex in the land of the “free.”

  6. After it being discussed in the republican debate it most definitely should be discussed in the democratic debate. Hillary has not supported legalizing marijuana and I would like to see how she responds to the topic so that people can see she does not support legalization. Also, I think it makes Bernie’s stance more concrete if he shows his support for legalizing marijuana in this debate.

  7. saynotohypocrisy on

    Why should keeping cannabis away from kids mean keeping it away from adults when that’s not how we deal with the far more dangerous substances alcohol and tobacco? The burden is on the prohibitionists to explain their ‘reasoning’.

  8. It has to be spoken of during the debate, the hints and maybes are not going to cut it. No candidate will get my vote without it and probably a lot more people feel the same. Politicians are afraid of the dark, and need to be disabused of their outmoded thinking. this topic is not about using cannabis to get high, it is about freedom from arbitrary laws meant to perpetuate themselves. Freedom is the issue!

  9. They will talk about it and at least half of the candidates will talk about “the children”. Nevermind that childhood obesity has doulbed in the last 30 years or that more than 1/3 of children are now obese and developing chronic diseases from it.

    No…we have to keep marijuana away from the children.

    A super big gulp with 85 grams of sugar is fine though.

  10. They are going to avoid it like the plague and the media should be ashamed of themselves for not putting this discussion at the forefront of the debate. The fact is this issue is as huge as any being discussed tonight and it won’t see the light of day.

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