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1. Do you support a legal, regulated, and taxed market for recreational cannabis, allowing Wisconsin residents over the age of 21 to purchase and possess up to two ounces (or more) of cannabis from regulated dispensaries, as proposed by State Rep. Melissa Sargent’s (D-Madison) AB482?
Yes. I was the first in the field of candidates for governor to come out in favor of full legalization.
2. Do you support allowing any Wisconsin resident over the age of 21 to grow up to 6 (or more) cannabis plants at home without a license, as proposed by AB482?
3. Do you support allowing patients suffering from various ailments to purchase and use cannabis as treatment for their ailments if they have a doctor’s recommendation?
4. Do you agree with the qualifying conditions for medical cannabis outlined in Section 42 of AB482 (listed below)?
(2) “Debilitating medical condition or treatment" means any of the following: (a) Cancer; glaucoma; acquired immunodeficiency syndrome; a positive test for the presence of HIV, antigen or nonantigenic products of HIV, or an antibody to HIV; Crohn's disease; a hepatitis C virus infection; Alzheimer's disease; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; nail patella syndrome; Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome; post-traumatic stress disorder; or the treatment of these conditions. (b) A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or the treatment of such a disease or condition that causes cachexia, severe pain, severe nausea, seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy, or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis. (c) Any other medical condition or any other treatment for a medical condition designated as a debilitating medical condition or treatment in rules promulgated by the department of health services under s. 50.81 (2).
5. Answer this question only if you support both recreational and medicinal uses of cannabis. Do you support allowing medical cannabis patients to possess more cannabis than recreational users and to be exempt from the taxes that are imposed on recreational users?
Yes. My proposal for taxation of legal sales treats recreational and medical uses differently. To see details of my plan, go here.
6. Do you support a permitting system that would enable publicly-accessible establishments to allow legal possessors of cannabis to smoke it in outdoor areas at their establishments? This would address an issue present in other states’ implementations, where many people are legally allowed to purchase and possess cannabis, but have no place to legally consume it.
7. Do you support conviction expungement or pardons for anyone convicted of possession, growing, and/or selling cannabis in Wisconsin?
I am committed to reversing the governor’s policy of refusing to consider any requests for pardons. Pardons for those who have not been convicted of any violent act or property damage should be considered and granted, and that includes convictions for possessing, growing, selling or using cannabis.
8. Do you support or would you consider any other cannabis regulatory or legalization scheme for Wisconsin
My position is outlined here.
9. Do you believe that possession of limited amounts of cannabis by a person in his or her own home or in another’s home with the owner’s permission should be legal in the State of Wisconsin?
10. What level of taxes do you think should be imposed on recreational cannabis?
The level of taxation I’ve proposed is in line with what is done in states like Colorado, Washington and Oregon. For more information, see here.
11. How do you think that tax revenue should be used?
I’ve proposed using it to make investments in health and education. Specifically, my plan calls for using the new source of revenue to fund expanded treatment options for those struggling with opioid and methamphetamine addiction and make higher education more affordable.
12. Why is cannabis law reform an important issue to you?
Current drug laws have proven ineffective, counterproductive and racially discriminatory. Those who use have shown they will use whether it’s legal or illegal. Drug laws making a second marijuana possession charge a felony in Wisconsin don’t make communities safer or improve public health, they only fill jail cells with nonviolent offenders. That drives mass incarceration and is a key reason why Wisconsin spends more of its state budget on prisons than on the entire university system. Imprisoning twice as many people in Wisconsin than in neighboring Minnesota hasn’t resulted in less crime in Wisconsin. The two states have virtually identical crime rates. But because Wisconsin spends so much more on prisons than Minnesota, we are far less able to invest in empowering young people with higher education. Our state is literally spending more on locking people up than on unlocking human potential. That tragic reality needs to be reversed. Additionally, legalizing cannibas for medical use can help combat the growing opioid abuse problem. States with legal medical cannabis have a 25% lower opioid overdose mortality rate. (See https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/1898878 and https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/article-abstract/2676997)