Gary Johnson Marijuana: Libertarian Senate Candidate Invested in Weed
As part of the campaign process, Johnson is obligated to present a detailed record of his financial holdings, debt, and sources of income so that the public can pinpoint any conflicts of interest.
Johnson’s records disclosed numerous financial links to the legal marijuana industry which are being viewed by many as conflicts of interest, particularly his ownership of more than $250,000 worth of stock in a Las Vegas-based cannabis company called Kush.
In addition, Johnson’s part of profit share agreement with an investment fund called CB1 Capital, a fund that invests solely in the cannabis arena has raised concerned.
Johnson is reportedly serving as one of CB1 Capital’s key advisers.
His financial disclosure also divulged that he is receiving capital gains from stocks he holds in Cannabis Sativa, a marijuana holding company where Johnson once held the title of Chief Executive Officer.
The candidate previously ran for president twice on a Libertarian ticket, while highlighting his support of legalization.
Studies show that New Mexico residence consumes a fairly high amount of weed. A report completed in 2016 discovered that the state had at least 27,000 registered medical marijuana patients with an estimated 138,000 people who regularly consume illegal marijuana.
Researchers used the study to estimate the amount of cannabis the demand for marijuana in the legal adult-use market for in New Mexico. It shows that this type of market would consume more than 57 metric tons of cannabis annually.
The report concluded that the marijuana needed to facilitate the market would be worth roughly $412 million with a potential to grow to as much as $677 million.
Gart Johnson Marijuana Ties — Is it Even a Problem?
Unlike, Johnson, his opposition Democrat Martin Heinrich, and Republican Mick Rich have different opinions where marijuana is concerned. Heinrich advocates for decriminalization and Rich opposes legalization.
Johnson does not believe that there is any conflict of interest, he stated that there is no problem with his financial interests in the legal marijuana market because his political advocacy is not surpassed by his investments and work in the cannabis industry.
He explained to the Albuquerque Journal that he never imagined that he would generate an income from cannabis.
“This was a career-ending move on my part in 1999. The last thing that I ever dreamed of happening is that somehow I would make money off this.”
If Johnson is elected, the repercussions for cannabis rights could be significant. Another pro-marijuana senator could aid in the struggle to make cannabis federally legal and remove its schedule 1 status.
Cannabis being federally illegal effects a number of things including scientists ability to conduct medical research, the ability of banks to deal with cannabis companies and, arrests on federal land, including national parks.