With a belief that marijuana should be made legal at the federal level, Gary Johnson, the former governor of New Mexico who became the Libertarian Party’s presidential nominee back in 2012, has made the decision to resign from his position as CEO with a major medical marijuana corporation in an effort to make another bid for the White House in 2016.
It was during an appearance on Fox Business earlier this week when Johnson, who is now 63-years-old, told host Neil Cavuto that he was once again seeking the nomination from the Libertarian Party. Just days before, it was revealed in a press release that Johnson was stepping down as the top dog at Cannabis Sativa, Inc to pursue “political opportunities.”
Some of the latest financial data reveals the company’s stocks have been sinking since March 2015, which may have had some influence on Johnson’s decision to jump ship and get back into politics.
Unlike other candidates, many of which maintain that marijuana legalization should be left up to individual states, Johnson believes weed should be eliminated from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Controlled Substances Act and legalized at the federal level in a manner that allows the herb to be bought and sold in American like beer and cigarettes.
In a recent interview with The Daily Caller, Johnson, who claims to be “the highest public official since 1999,” predicted that California would prove successful in its effort to legalize a recreational cannabis industry this November. He also believes around 20 state legislatures will pass comparable reforms to their respective marijuana laws.
Although some political analysts believe a Libertarian nomination for a guy like Gary Johnson has the potential to make a difference in a presidential race like the one before us in 2016, there really is not much of a chance of a third party candidate swooping in and becoming salvation’s wing for the citizens of the United States. In 2012, Johnson was able to gain only one percent of the popular vote against Democrat Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney, and with his procrastination in joining the race this year, he would be lucky to receive that much support in November.
It is for this reason that Johnson understands that the entire basis of his campaign cannot be rooted in securing votes from the stoner nation because the average pothead does not turn up at the polls.
“When you go back four years ago when I was running for president on the Republican side,” Johnson explained, “I made the statement that if everyone that smoked marijuana gave me a dollar, I’d have $150 million dollars in my coffer. None of that happened. It is a big zero when it comes to the ballot box. Is it the right thing to be advocating? Absolutely. But does it result in political benefits? I haven’t seen it.”
Nevertheless, Johnson argues that something drastic needs to be done in the realm of national reform. He says that while nearly 60 percent of the population supports legalization, no one in Congress is advocating for weed.