Since legalizing the recreational use and taxing the sales of marijuana, Colorado has seen an enormous growth in tax income. In just the first three months of 2015 alone, Colorado has collected over 7 million dollars for the state’s education system. After seeing how successful Colorado has been with the legalization of marijuana, the citizens of New Jersey and many other states are probably asking, “When will it be legal here?” According to a poll conducted by Rutgers University, 58% of New Jersey citizens would vote for the legalization of recreational marijuana use for those who are 21 years of age or older. With this information, one might suspect that legalization will happen sooner rather than later. However, due to the current political situation in New Jersey surrounding the matter, this may not be the case.
As it stands today, a federal law lists marijuana as an illegal, schedule I controlled substance. This law prohibits the recreational use and sale of marijuana throughout the United States and has clearly been broken by Alaska, Oregon, Colorado, Washington, and The District of Columbia. Yes, you read that correctly. Technically, those states (and one district) are currently breaking a federal law. However, the Obama administration has decided to not enforce the law, thus leaving the individual state’s governments to decide whether or not to legalize the drug. That being said, barring the federal government legalizing its use throughout the country, marijuana will not be legalized in New Jersey any time before 2018, when Chris Christie’s second and final term as Governor is over.
Anyone from New Jersey knows that Chris Christie has absolutely no problem telling everyone his political opinions on any issue. When it comes to recreational marijuana use, Mr. Christie couldn’t be more against the idea. In a recent interview, Christie even announced that if he is elected president, he would eliminate the legalization of recreational marijuana use throughout the country due to his belief that it is a gateway drug. He has also gone on record stating that he would veto a bill attempting to decriminalize marijuana use in New Jersey as well. It looks like recreational marijuana will not be discussed unless this federal law changes or a new Governor is elected with the opposite views of Chris Christie on the matter.