Jason Kuznicki

Jason Kuznicki is a research fellow at the Cato Institute and contributor of Cato Unbound. He's on twitter as JasonKuznicki. His interests include political theory and history.

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21 Responses

  1. The introduction of this bill is huge. It of course has no possibility of obtaining passage, but that’s not the point. In the absence of a popularly perceived emergency, non-fiscal legislation takes years of coalition building to pass. Where the proposed legislation is perceived as a huge electoral risk, it also requires years of sponsors not getting killed at the polls to pass. But for the ball to even begin rolling, someone needs to introduce the legislation the first time.

    The ball is finally rolling.Report

  2. Chris says:

    Kucinich has been pro-legalization for a while, hasn’t he?Report

  3. Chris says:

    I think Kucinich and Paul are pretty similar. They both have a great deal of support from a certain element within their party, but not much outside of that element. Perhaps one difference is that there are some on the left who would vote for Paul, while there probably aren’t many on the right who would vote for Kucinich.

    I don’t know a whole lot about Johnson.Report

  4. Thrilled to hear about this and I agree with Mark that this is the first tiny step in a long, multi-year effort. But damn it’s a good start.Report

  5. RTod says:

    Good point, Jason – and so ironic. I would be willing to bet that the D’s base would be much more open to legalization then the R’s. Odd that it is the Rs who have candidates test-ballooning it.Report

    • Jaybird in reply to RTod says:

      I went to a Democratic Caucus in 2008.

      Here’s the part of the story from when they opened up the floor to various resolutions:

      Now the resolutions are open to the floor. Someone asks that we pass a resolution noting our footprint on this earth and how we need to reduce our carbon footprint. Passed overwhelmingly.

      I decide, as a Democrat, to speak up.

      “Be it resolved that we end the War on Drugs and War against our Citizens.”

      A middle-aged matron on the other side of the room said “I am a teacher and we have got to continue to fight the War on Drugs for the children.”

      An old lady on my side of the room said “We should still fight the drug dealers in Columbia!”

      A middle-aged African-American on the other side of the room said something to the effect of “It’s a shame that the hammer of the law comes down hardest on minorities but we shouldn’t just give up…”

      A guy who has obviously been to more caucuses than I makes a motion to table my resolution.

      33 votes to table. 2 opposed.Report

    • Jason Kuznicki in reply to RTod says:

      Legalizing marijuana now polls roughly as well as many issues on which the candidates are expected to take a party-line stance. Being pro-life — virtually required as a Republican — polls around 45%, give or take. Pro-pot gets about the same percentage.

      Neither party wants to take up the cause. Partly this is because pot has only recently started doing so well, while the abortion numbers have been around that level for years. Partly though too there is a stigma among some of the population that marks a candidate as downright crazy for taking a pro-pot stance. The party suffers by association, of course, which is why they won’t touch it.

      Likewise, those inside the beltway are never, ever going to give up even a smidgen of their power unless they are convinced that it’s the only way to keep the rest of their power. This is a lot more than a smidgen, so I’m figuring popular support will have to be way over 50% for this one to go anywhere.Report

      • Jesse Ewiak in reply to Jason Kuznicki says:

        Yes, what the Beltway sees as “sensible and moderate” is much different than what you get when you poll actual Americans. See their warm embrace of Paul Ryan as a Very Serious Person.Report

  6. Jaybird says:

    When “lowest law enforcement priority” bills have passed in many municipalities, police have responded by saying “we’re going to arrest who we are going to arrest.”

    Fun Thought Experiment:

    Assuming this passes (which, of course, it won’t), how will Justice respond? Similarly?Report

    • DensityDuck in reply to Jaybird says:

      To some extent it’s probably going to end up like enforcement of traffic laws.

      If you break a traffic law in an egregious manner right in front of a police officer, then you’ll probably get a ticket.

      If you break a traffic law in a relatively minor way where nobody can see you and nobody gets hurt, they aren’t going to go out of their way to catch you.Report

  7. Tim says:

    Are people really sure this has no chance? It has a kind of DADT feeling to me. Yes there will be a ton of opposition, but it also might be one of those issues that is sort of reaching its “let’s just finally do the right thing and be done with it” moment.Report