A Democratic candidate running to represent Arizona in the U.S. Senate said he intends to vote in favor on initiative to legalize marijuana that will appear on the state’s ballot next month. And he’s similarly inclined to pursue enacting cannabis policy changes at the federal level if elected.
Mark Kelly, an astronaut and military veteran, was asked during a Sunday interview with KPNX-TV to weigh in on a wide range of policy issues. When it comes to marijuana, the candidate said “I think I’m going to vote ‘yes’” on the legalization measure.
“It has some provisions in there to decriminalize it and to address some of the incarceration rates for what are marijuana offenses,” he said. “I think that’s good. I think there’s a funding source there. So I’m probably going to vote ‘yes.’”
Watch Kelly discuss the cannabis legalization initiative below:
He added that his wife, former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-AZ), might come down differently on the question, saying they’ve “got a split household on that one.”
“I think she’s leaning the other way,” Kelly said of his wife, who did vote for a 2007 spending bill rider protecting state medical cannabis laws from federal interference during her time in Congress. “We’re still discussing it.”
Giffords’s vote on the state legalization measure might be an open question, but recent internal polling from the campaign indicates that it’s in a safe spot heading into November. That survey found that 57 percent of likely voters support the policy change, with 38 percent in opposition.
That said, another recent poll that’s being touted by opponents of the measure shows a closer race, with just 46 percent favor legalization and 45 percent don’t.
Pressed on whether he would support efforts to remove marijuana from Schedule I under federal law if he beats out