Andrew Scheer says if elected Conservatives won’t Undo legalization

Andrew Scheer says Conservatives Will Not reverse legalization if Chosen

After Conservative leader Andrew Scheer made headlines last week for seeming to be open to reversing cannabis legalization if his party won the election in 2019, he finally cleared the air this morning on a Quebec radio series , saying:

“We recognize the fact so I do not intend to return and make marijuana illegal. But we make the necessary corrections and will see what happens inside the year. ”

That’s a huge contrast to the non-answer he gave CTV on Oct. 18, the day after legalization:

The Conservative Party will do our due diligence, examine the consequences of the decision, and we’ll examine the facts on the ground.

We need to be realistic about what a change such as this means for society and all of the consequences.

So much for the “wait and see” strategy, eh?  At least now we have a concrete and real answer- cannabis legalization is here to stay, because the Conservatives realized that promising to make cannabis illegal would be political suicide which might be.

While practically all Conservative politicians opposed Bill C-45 (the sole exception being Ontario MP Scott Reid), there’s a huge difference between being against the Cannabis Act as it went through the legislative process and actively trying to repeal it now it’s in effect.

“Does [Scheer] want to recriminalize Canadians? I think he would face a backlash that is very substantial. ”

In line with the Financial Post, a poll recently conducted by Forum Research found that 52 percent of Canadians approved of legalization while 41% disapproved, but that doesn’t accounts for generational differences.

That same poll found 74 percent of respondents below the age of 34 approved of legalization so campaigning on recriminalizing cannabis ran the serious risk of alienating the youth vote for years to come.

Reversing legalization was not a good idea

Recriminalizing cannabis would have reversed all of the work done on the social justice front where the government has streamlined the pardon procedure for those convicted of cannabis possession crimes.

Not to mention what would happen to the millions of Canadians that tried cannabis for the first time on Oct.17 (I’m being facetious). 

Scheer himself seemed to recognize the uphill struggle of reversing legalization over a year ago when he told Global back in April 2017:

“If this is something which has been legal for a period of time, it’s going to be very tricky to state, ‘Hey, we’re planning to make this illegal again. ’”

Given that the national election is scheduled for Oct. 21, 2019, that’s basically 1 year for Canadians to get used to legalized cannabis- what Rielle Capler, a PhD cannabis policy research at UBC, calls “a multi-billion dollar industry that’s going to be in full force and employing thousands of Canadians”.

If legalization was rolled back, all of those jobs would disappear and the black economy would bounce back stronger than ever- and the Conservatives should be the ones who are “tough on crime”!

I guess that the Conservatives finally realized that recriminalizing cannabis would be shooting themselves in the foot and was more likely to lose them support in the long term.

In addition, rolling back legalization would have made Mr. Scheer a massive hypocrite because…

Mr. Scheer has confessed to smoking cannabis when he was younger

I hope my dad is not watching this show. … When I was young, yes.

But apparently, these were just young transgressions that occurred when Scheer was partying as a university student, according to Jake Enwright, Mr. Scheer’s director of media relations.

While Scheer’s cannabis smoking occurred more than once, Mr. Enwright said, “It’s hard to put a precise number on it”, when going on to mention that Mr. Scheer never purchased it himself- but Is that better or does it only make him a freeloader or opportunist who’s vulnerable to peer pressure?

That’s certainly not a good look for someone who wishes to lead the nation.

Featured image courtesy of CBC.

Sources

CTV News: Goodale cautions Scheer: Reversing legal bud would trigger backlash.

Globe and Mail: Scheer admits to smoking marijuana in the past, says he opposes government’s plan for legalization.

National Post: Scheer clarifies that no, a Conservative government wouldn’t re-criminalize cannabis.

Published at Wed, 24 Oct 2018 17:15:07 +0000

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