Obama: Legalization in CO, WA ‘Important’

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President Barack Obama said it’s “important” to move forward with marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington in yet another sign attitudes toward cannabis are shifting.

The president, who made the comments during an interview with The New Yorker, said that legalization in the two states should advance “because it’s important for society not to have a situation in which a large portion of people have at one time or another broken the law and only a select few get punished.”

Obama also said he believes cannabis is no more dangerous than alcohol – some of his strongest words yet on marijuana.

Still, he said marijuana legalization is not panacea for the nation’s ills and that the “experiment” in Colorado and Washington will be challenging.

Last week, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid came out in support of medical marijuana, while last year noted health expert Dr. Sanjay Gupta announced that he had changed his position on MMJ and now agrees that cannabis does have medical benefits.