With mid-term elections happening later this year, campaigning efforts are getting underway. Already, one overtly pro-cannabis candidate is making headlines. As an aspect of his new website, an Illinois Congressional candidate smokes marijuana for a campaign ad.
A Weed-Smoking Candidate
Benjamin Thomas Wolf is a Democratic candidate campaigning the 5th Congressional District in Illinois. To prepare for the primary vote on March 20, Wolf has been boosting his campaign efforts.
Most recently, that means making his support of weed explicitly clear. A new campaign ad published on the homepage of Wolf’s website features a photo of the candidate sitting in a chair holding a joint and surrounded by smoke. A painting of a U.S. flag is behind him.
Directly beneath the photo, Wolf’s attitude on weed is articulated clearly and simply. The ad says “Legalize cannabis. Vote March 20th.”
Wolf is a former FBI operative and U.S. diplomat. And, as it appears, he’s also a big fan of cannabis. Based on his website and recent interviews, he likes weed for several important reasons.
” As a cannabis user, I think it’s important we get out front and talk about it,” he told news sources recently. “We realize that cannabis can bring billions of dollars to the state, it’s medicine for millions of people around the country, it changes criminal justice reform and personally I think it’s a wonderful recreational substance as well.”
Now, Wolf is making his pro-weed position a key piece of his campaign platform. Wolf is also pushing to pardon anyone serving time for weed-related charges.
His website includes a list of key platform positions. Among them is “the immediate legalization of marijuana and hemp for both recreational and medicinal uses in every U.S. cities, territories, and states.”
The site also says: “This will bring billions of dollars in tax revenue and allow major reform in our criminal justice system.”
Final Hit: Congressional Candidate Smokes Marijuana For Campaign Ad
Wolf’s pro-weed position can be a big deal in Illinois. The state has seen a variety of reforms on the cannabis law front, but no legalization.
The city of Chicago passed an ordinance to decriminalize cannabis in 2011. Despite this effort to reform weed laws, reports in more recent years have uncovered stark racial disparities in how these laws are enforced.
These reports found that people of color are consistently arrested and cited more frequently than white people for marijuana possession.
In 2016, the rest of the state followed suit. That year, Illinois lawmakers decriminalized weed. And at the beginning of 2018, an Illinois judge expanded the state’s list of health conditions that get approved for medical marijuana.
Over the last couple years, there has been a great deal of speculation that Illinois may be among the next states to legalize recreational cannabis. Progress seemed to slow down when Governor Bruce Rauner said he would not support a legalization bill.
“I do not support legalizing marijuana. I think it’s a mistake,” he said in late 2017. Rauner said that the state should take more time to study the implications of legalization before making any legal alterations.
Things could change if outspoken pro-cannabis lawmakers and candidates like Wolf end up winning seats in Illinois this year.
Already, one overtly pro-cannabis candidate is making headlines. As part of his new website, an Illinois Congressional candidate smokes marijuana for a campaign ad.
A new campaign ad published on the homepage of Wolf’s website features a photo of the candidate sitting in a chair holding a joint and surrounded by smoke. That year, Illinois lawmakers decriminalized weed. And at the beginning of 2018, an Illinois judge expanded the state’s list of health conditions that qualify for medical marijuana.