Those concerned that the next U.S. president won’t be as amenable to marijuana as the Obama administration might consider voting for Democratic nominee and current U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who voiced his outright support for decriminalization—and perhaps eventually backing full cannabis legalization—on Tuesday.
Sanders made his optimistic remarks during a Q&A session on Reddit, the social media website that enables registered users to directly participate in interviews with celebs and politicians.
One Reddit user who goes by the handle “ynmidk” referenced a 2014 Time interview in which Sanders opined that pot decriminalization is “not a major issue,” while adding that he would “look into it.” The user then asked Sanders if he, “could… update us on your position regarding the war on drugs?”
Sanders responded that he supported his home state of Vermont’s decision to decriminalize small amounts of personal pot. He added that when he served as mayor of Burlington, his administration ensured “very few people were arrested for smoking marijuana. Our police had more important things to do.”
Sanders then implicated he may well broaden his perspective.
“Colorado has led the effort towards legalizing marijuana and I’m going to watch very closely to see the pluses and minuses of what they have done,” he said. “I will have more to say about this issue within the coming months.”
Reddit users went on to discuss the implications of Sanders’ comments. Most users were excited that a potential presidential candidate like Sanders is even willing to discuss the possibility of federal decriminalization and, perhaps, one day, total nationwide legalization of cannabis.