DALLAS (AP) — Democratic candidate for Texas governor Wendy Davis said Tuesday that she supports the use of medical marijuana and would consider decriminalizing possession of small amounts of the substance.
She explained her position in an interview with the Dallas Morning News editorial board.
“We as a state need to think about the cost of that incarceration and, obviously, the cost to the taxpayers as a consequence of it, and whether we’re really solving any problem for the state by virtue of incarcerations for small amounts of marijuana possession,” Davis said, according to a transcript of the meeting and confirmed by the Davis campaign.
Davis told editors that Texas should learn from the experiences of other states when considering revamping drug laws. She said she’s not sure how she would vote if Texas had a referendum on legalizing marijuana like the ones held in Washington and Colorado.
“I want to wait and see what happens in Colorado,” Davis said. “Do I have any objections to the fact that citizens might want to legalize marijuana? No, I don’t. But I think watching to see how this experiment plays out in other states is probably advisable before I could tell you for sure.”
Gov. Rick Perry has said he supports decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, partially because the state is trying to keep non-violent offenders out of prisons. He opposes legalizing the drug and would continue to make selling it illegal.
Perry and other Republicans, though, oppose medical marijuana that Davis said she would legalize, if Texas voters supported it.
“I personally believe that medical marijuana should be allowed for,” she said. “Certainly as governor I think it’s important to be deferential to whether the state of Texas feels that it’s ready for that.”
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