Alongside constituents who want marijuana legalization, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand on Sunday demanded in a latter a face-to-face meeting with Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
“I am requesting a meeting with individuals and myself whose lives have been irreparably harmed because of non-violent marijuana arrests,” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) wrote in a letter to Sessions on Sunday.
In February, Gillibrand officially joined Sen. Cory Booker over his Marijuana Justice Act, which he introduced in the Senate last year. The bill removes marijuana from the federal government’s list of controlled dangerous substances.
On Thursday, former Democratic presidential nominee Bernie Sanders lent his support to the bill.
Observers believe both Gillibrand and Sanders could run for president in 2020. This could make the legalization of marijuana a major election platform for the Democratic party.
“I am requesting a meeting with individuals and myself whose lives have been irreparably harmed because of non-violent marijuana arrests,” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) wrote in a letter to Sessions on Sunday. “The effects of these arrests and convictions last a lifetime. Men and women who were incarcerated are unable to vote, do not qualify for public housing, and have difficulty finding employment.”
The Senator also highlighted the racial disparity, a consequence of prohibition.
“The stigma associated with these arrests stifles future opportunities for a generation of black Americans,” she wrote. “While this country cannot erase die damage caused by 40 years of policies designed to target black Americans, we can implement new policies that will reverse some of their harsh consequences.”