Andrew Cuomo has had a rough year. The New York governor has been battered by scandals and has lost the protection of the media that only months ago portrayed him as an American hero.
With a parade of former aides coming forward to allege that Cuomo sexually harassed them, the Democrat is badly in need of a distraction. Even more-so after disturbing accounts on how he ordered patients infected with COVID into nursing homes leading to the death of thousands of seniors.
So this week Cuomo finally got some positive buzz from the press for legalizing the recreational use of weed in New York. It’s the latest Democrat-controlled state to do so despite the controversial nature of such a radical social shift, and the potential for a rise in addictions as more people will be inclined to try the “gateway” drug.
On Wednesday he put his signature on the bill passed by the state legislature that legalizes weed for adults. It will make New York into the nations’ second largest recreational marijuana market once licensed dispensaries are opened; possibly as early as 2022.
The governor trumpeted his great achievement and the welcome reprieve from the scrutiny of his mounting scandals tweeting, “This is a historic day. I thank the Leader and Speaker and the tireless advocacy of so many”.
#BREAKING: I just signed legislation legalizing adult-use cannabis.
The bill creates automatic expungement of previous marijuana convictions that would now be legal.
This is a historic day.
I thank the Leader and Speaker and the tireless advocacy of so many.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) March 31, 2021
He also sought to spin the new law in racial terms because that is all that Democrats know how to do: “For too long the prohibition of cannabis disproportionately targeted communities of color with harsh prison sentences and after years of hard work, this landmark legislation provides justice for long-marginalized communities, embraces a new industry that will grow the economy, and establishes substantial safety guards for the public”, said Cuomo in a statement after signing the bill.
State Democrats were gleeful; “This legislation is a momentous first step in addressing the racial disparities caused by the war on drugs that has plagued our state for too long,” said New York Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins.
New York Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie added, “Passage of this bill will mean not just legalizing marijuana, but also investing in education and our communities, and it brings to an end decades of disproportionately targeting people of color under state and federal drug laws”.
In a statement praising the legislation, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said, “At long last, New York has legalized marijuana and created a fair program that will uplift communities of color previously harmed by criminalization. I am thrilled this legislation has achieved much of what we pushed for with that effort by prioritizing licenses for those negatively impacted by criminalization, expunging convictions for past marijuana charges, and new social equity initiatives that will help communities most harmed by past marijuana laws”.
Mayor de Blasio didn’t mention Cuomo after calling for his resignation over the accusations of sexual misconduct, possibly eyeing the governor’s job for himself.
With the social justice angle largely being the politics of self-preservation for Cuomo, one major reason for promoting the use of dope is purely economic. Following his Draconian COVID restrictions destroying jobs and businesses, the cuts to tax revenue, and many New Yorkers to fleeing the state, the governor needs a bailout anywhere he can get it.
Legalized pot is expected to generate $350 in annual tax revenue.
ARTICLE SOURCE : TRENDINGPOLITICS.COM