SE WI NORML Endorses Fabi Maldonado for Racine Mayor

On September 19th, Racine will be holding a primary election for mayor. The top two candidates with the most votes will advance to the general election in October. Southeastern Wisconsin NORML is endorsing Fabi Maldonado for mayor of Racine. If you live in Racine it's very important that you vote for Fabi. This will likely be a very close race, and a couple dozen votes could very likely mean the difference between victory or defeat. If you know someone who lives in Racine, please urge them to vote for Fabi Maldonado on September 19th.

Fabi has demonstrated a strong commitment to ending the injustice of cannabis prohibition. As co-chair of the Racine Green Party, Fabi lead an effort to lower the fine for cannabis possession in Racine to just $1, collecting over 5,200 signatures for the initiative in 60 days. The current government in Racine ended up disqualifying the ballot initiative on a technicality, but as mayor, Fabi will continue the effort to reduce cannabis arrests in the city and end the injustices of cannabis prohibition upon the community.

We sent a questionnaire to all of the candidates running for mayor of Racine (You can see the full responses below). Only Fabi Maldonado and Sandy Weidner replied.

Sandy signed the decriminalization petition and articulated her understanding that criminalizing cannabis has ruined many lives, but she voiced opposition to actual legalization. We thank Sandy for taking the time to reply and we appreciate her support for decriminalization, but given Fabi's support for full legalization of cannabis along with the fact that he dedicated his summer to cannabis law reform efforts, Fabi is the natural choice for our endorsement.

You can learn more about Fabi at https://www.fabiformayor.com and following his Facebook page. Also check out his short campaign video to learn what Fabi stands for.

Below are the questionnaire responses.


Fabi Maldonado

1) Do you support decriminalizing cannabis possession in Racine to a $1 fine?

Not only do I support, but we lead the charge on the direct legislation to decriminalize cannabis in the City of Racine. We collected over 5200 signatures during our petition gathering. The City of Racine has spoken once again. We cannot afford to wait any longer. Southeastern Wisconsin has the highest incarceration rate of young African American males in the whole country.  If this petition makes it on the ballot it will lead to $1 forfeitures if found with possessions of 25 grams or less of cannabis.  

2) If elected, will you do everything in your power to stop the Racine police from arresting people for cannabis possession?

Yes, we have already reached out to Police Chief Art Howell in order to work in collaboration with our police. We must remember that we are not against our police, but rather against the policy that allows police to choose to go for either the state statute or the city ordinance. If elected I will definitely do what I can as Mayor to make sure our citizen's voices are heard. Cannabis has been decriminalized before. Let’s us follow our citizen's wishes.

3) Do you support Wisconsin legalizing the sale and possession of cannabis in a manner similar to the law in Colorado?

Absolutely! We should not be allowing this industry to pass us by, the people of Wisconsin are both in need of employment and economic growth. Colorado has made over $1 billion dollars since full legalization, they have used this money to upgrade or repair schools, roads, and infrastructure. The state has gotten thousands of jobs in cultivation, retail, and the medical fields. We need to move Wisconsin forward.

Southeastern Wisconsin has the highest incarceration rate of young African American males. Legalization for Wisconsin means less targeting of minorities and fewer people in jail. We need to stop the harsh penalties that keep families broken. Studies show that having two parents in a child’s first years are very critical. Once a person has gotten a felony or misdemeanor it becomes hard to find employment and get into college. Let’s us stop the failed drug war and keep families together.

Last but not least are the medical benefits that cannabis provides as we are in the midst of a heroin overdose epidemic, something that can be mitigated by the use of cannabis. There are thousands of people who would benefit from cannabis as a safe and nonaddictive alternative to highly addictive opiate pain killers. Cannabis is a viable treatment for seizures, cancer, depression, anxiety and several others.

4) Do you have any policy specifics that you would like to note? 

We can not forget to decriminalize paraphernalia, it is currently a $500 fine and 30 days in jail, this is another obscene taxation targeted primarily at the poor to fund the private prison industry. Our policy is to decriminalize marijuana to $1forfeitures. We will be doing everything we can at a local level to decriminalize cannabis. If direct legislation petitioning does not work, we, in the Racine Green Party will be running multiple aldermanic candidates, so that we can change legislation from within the municipal government.


Sandy Weidner

1) Do you support decriminalizing cannabis possession in Racine to a $1 fine?

For too long, the approach to this issue has been, "We have other more important priorities." Over the years of that approach, literally millions of young lives have been damaged by an arrest record for what has been improperly labeled "criminal." I applaud the young people of The Green Party who took this issue on in a very public way to give the voters a chance to address it in the voting booth. I signed their petition.

2) If elected, will you do everything in your power to stop the Racine police from arresting people for cannabis possession?

I cannot in good conscience ask law enforcement to not enforce specific laws, but I can suggest that they devote their resources to addressing those crimes that most negatively impact the safety of our citizens. I don't consider medical cannabis users to be any threat at all and those non-violent pot smokers who respect the rights of others are not a priority.

3) Do you support Wisconsin legalizing the sale and possession of cannabis in a manner similar to the law in Colorado?

I don't personally endorse the "Wild West" atmosphere that has accompanied legalization in states such as Colorado and Oregon where dispensaries have popped up like candy stores, billboards promote usage and "marijuana millionaires" flaunt their newfound wealth. I'm more concerned about stopping the damage inflicted by the legal system on low level, non-violent, private users. We should also consider that "Industrial Hemp," the non-psychoactive strain of the same plant has been illegal as well. It is the source of many of the medicinal products as well as excellent fibers for such things as fabric and paper. Hemp was once a very important crop, and could be a valuable addition to Wisconsin's agricultural economy.

4) Do you have any policy specifics that you would like to note?

Absolutely! Keep the streets clean and safe, make sure the garbage gets picked up, promote small businesses and stop wasting valuable financial resources on sketchy development schemes! As far as Cannabis is concerned, I hope the voters get the opportunity to express their views at the ballot box.


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