Despite threats of a federal crackdown on marijuana, New Mexico lawmakers aren’t flinching. One advocate says it’s too late for the federal government to backtrack now. As many others would agree, other advocates say it is simply a states’ rights issue.
Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino believes that if prosecution of states with legal recreational marijuana happens, it’ll be a big problem for New Mexico, according to New Mexico In Depth. Lawmakers couldn’t make a decision regarding marijuana in the 2017 legislative session. Advocates and lawmakers aren’t giving up on the issue just yet.
Drug Policy Alliance of New Mexico executive director Emily Kaltenbach said, “We already have established robust markets in many of these states. California is the sixth largest economy in the world and they just legalized marijuana. As people say ‘the toothpaste is already out of the tube.’”
Senator Ortiz y Pino said, “It’s hard enough … when the administration is not pursuing that but when they are, it’s going to be very difficult.”
Some New Mexico lawmakers have made marijuana legalization a priority in an effort to save the failing economy of the state. Many see it as a big revenue booster.
Kaltenbach believes a new governor may need to be in place before New Mexico will see legal recreational marijuana. Governor Martinez is not a fan of recreational marijuana and has vowed to veto any bills legalizing it.
Kaltenback said, “If we don’t have a governor that’s going to support it, the amendment is valid. I don’t see any issue with having marijuana in the constitution. Alcohol is on our U.S. Constitution.”