The argument for legalizing and taxing marijuana
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To legalize or not?
That’s a question New Mexico (and so many other states in the nation) ponders in the wake of Washington state and Colorado recently decriminalizing marijuana.
In the current 60-day legislative session in Santa Fe, there is one bill looking to greatly reduce penalties for pot possession and two memorials in the Senate looking to study the economic and budgetary effects of decriminalizing marijuana.
Proponents of legalization say it will free up law enforcement to tackle violent crimes and libertarians say that what people put in their bodies should be their own choice.
Late last week, Jeffrey Miron of Harvard University’s department of economics and a senior fellow at the Cato Institute was in Santa Fe, arguing the economic benefit he sees with taxing and regulating marijuana.
Full disclosure: New Mexico Watchdog used to be fully funded by the Rio Grande Foundation but is now funded by the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity.