SANTA FE, NM (Feb 13, 2015) – By a close 5-4 vote yesterday, a New Mexico state Senate Committee passed a measure that would legalize marijuana for the general public, effectively rejecting the decades-long federal prohibition on the same.
Senate Joint Resolution 2 (SJR2), introduced by Sen. Gerald Ortiz y Pino (D-12), would bypass the Governor's desk if passed by the legislature and go to the ballot for a vote of the people. If approved, it would amend the state constitution authorizing marijuana to be taxed and regulated similar to alcohol.
Under the measure, Article 20 of the New Mexico state constitution would read as follows:
Possession and personal use of marijuana shall be lawful by persons twenty-one years of age or older. The legislature shall provide by law for the production, processing, transportation, sale, taxation and acceptable quantities and places of use of marijuana and hemp to protect public health and safety.
New Mexico now has the opportunity to join Alaska, Oregon, Colorado and Washington as states openly flouting the federal war on cannabis.
The passage of SJR2 would mark an enormous step in the right direction for cannabis rights advocates in the state of New Mexico. The top-down federal mandates that have failed for so many decades are being replaced by a more compassionate, decentralized approach that is responsive to the needs of the people.
Activists should embrace this tremendous opportunity to make it more difficult for individuals to be locked in cages for the non-violent non-crime of marijuana use, commerce and possession. The end of the federal drug war is on its way whether detractors like it or not. Measures such as SJR2 would help us toward that inevitable goal.
SJR2 now moves to the Senate Judiciary committee, where it will need to pass by a majority vote before the full Senate can consider it.
If you live in New Mexico, support this bill by asking ALL the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to vote YES on SJR2 - to let the PEOPLE have the final say. Find their contact info at THIS LINK