February 21, 2018
Former Mayor, U.S. Congressman, and famous peace advocate Dennis Kucinich formally announced his run for Governor of the state of Ohio on January 17, 2018. Soon after his announcement, Kucinich followed by hinting at his opposition to the drug war, causing many in Ohio and across the rest of the country to become excited at the possibility of a Governor not waging a war on citizens over plants and personal decisions.
Indeed, Kucinich is decidedly pro medical marijuana and opposed to the disastrous drug war. “Ohio will protect its constitutional right to dispense medical marijuana. We will broaden the conversation towards decriminalization, legalization and licensing to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in increased revenues to the state, to help pay for our expanded health programs. With the help of our congressional delegation we will make necessary changes in federal policy,” Kucinich said.
On February 15, a little over a month after he announced his candidacy, Kucinich announced a more detailed version of his marijuana policy as well as his policy aimed at breaking the prison industrial complex.
We must break the prison-industrial complex.
We must stop the waste – and the inhumanity -- of spending hundreds of millions of tax dollars to warehouse low-level, non-violent offenders in public prisons and private for-profit prisons. We should be filling up our schools and employment centers, not our jails.
We will issue an executive order that no person convicted of any offense against the laws of the state of Ohio shall be remanded to any facility of incarceration which operates on a for-profit basis. We will end private for-profit prisons in our state.
. . . . .
Ohioans are spending millions of dollars a year to house low-level non-violent offenders, particularly those convicted of committing petty drug offenses such as the use of marijuana.
We commit that upon our election, we will immediately create a program to speedily review all non-violent, drug-related convictions on a case-by-case basis to determine where the governor’s power of commutation is warranted.
. . . . .
There will be a renewed emphasis on rehabilitation that provides non-violent offenders with reasonable and appropriate opportunities to rejoin society, to find jobs, and get an education. Those who have paid their debt to society should not have to continue to pay over and over.
We will also significantly increase investment in programs that help those in jail participate in job training and other educational programs to enhance their ability to successfully re-integrate into society.
To further assist with reintegration into society and the restoration of rights and liberties, we will take necessary steps to reinstate state voting rights immediately. We will ensure funding for education for facilitating post-release voting rights restoration.Kucinich then addressed medical marijuana specifically by stating, “Medical marijuana can be a significant part of the solution to the drug epidemic. First, we will absolutely protect this state’s right to dispense medical marijuana; and we will take every step necessary to monitor and regulate the program in the best interests of the citizens of Ohio.”
Kucinich went even further, however, and expressed a clear desire and way forward to legalization of recreational marijuana in Ohio. He stated,
We support the legalization through responsible regulation of recreational marijuana. We will lead the way towards decriminalization, legalization, licensing, and taxation of recreational marijuana to provide the hundreds of millions of dollars in increased revenues that will help pay for expanded health and mental health programs.
We will convene a bipartisan panel of community activists and experts to develop a plan to move toward responsible legalization and taxation of recreational marijuana in Ohio.
We will work with members of the state’s Congressional delegation, to enact appropriate measures whenever medical or recreational use requires changes in federal policies or statutes.Kucinich’s “Criminal Justice Policies And Programs” addressed a number of other issues he believes will bring about a reform of the criminal justice system, the opioid crisis, police brutality, and violence in the state. While his platform unfortunately contains well-meaning but misguided gun control elements, it also stands firmly against private prisons, police brutality, and government corruption while supporting efforts to better compensate and train law enforcement officers and improve the conditions of prisons housing inmates. The issue of marijuana alone sets Kucinich apart from his Democratic opponents as his platform has done since the very beginning.
You can read Kucinich’s platform in full here at his campaign website DennisKucinich.com.
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Brandon Turbeville – article archive here – is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies,Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2, The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria,and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 1,000 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.