Hickenlooper's Glaring Hypocrisy on Cannabis
Colorado House Bill 18-258 was written in order to give the residents of the state somewhere other than private residences to legally consume cannabis. These tasting rooms and lounges would, in theory, allow customers to sample different types of cannabis and cannabis-based products - like edibles and concentrates - before they buy.
In the cannabis-friendly state, the bill had high hopes for passage but earlier this week Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper flexed his authority and vetoed the bill, killing it outright.
To defend this move, the Gov stated that the new bill would conflict with Amendment 64, the 2014 law that made the recreational use of cannabis legal in Colorado. According to him, “Amendment 64 is clear, marijuana consumption may not be conducted 'openly or publicly' or 'in a manner that endangers others. We find that HB 18-1258 directly conflicts with this constitutional requirement.”
It’s interesting that he mentions just how clear it is, especially considering he changed a key word from the original language of A64 which actually reads “marijuana consumption may not be conducted 'openly and publicly' or 'in a manner that endangers others.”
It may seem like a small detail, but there is a lot of room for different interpretations of the intent of the law when you start changing the actual wording of the law.
But let’s focus on the “endangers others” part, since Gov. Hickenlooper is very familiar with ‘tasting rooms’ and ‘social lounges’.
You see, he’s not just the Governor, but Hickenlooper opened a place named Wynkoop Brewery way back in 1988 and they are still open today giving people guided tasting tours and offering alcohol consumption both on site or available to go.
Pretty standard right? A lot of breweries in Colorado, and nationwide these days. So it was founded by the anti-weed governor, oh well!
Here is some more of what ol' Hick had to say about these same rules and allowances being applied to cannabis instead of booze: “HB 18-1258 sends the wrong message by permitting people to consume marijuana in a public setting, a practice that may increase the number of impaired drivers on our roadways”.
Wow. The balls on this guy.
We could list stat after stat after stat about how many people die on Colorado’s roadways each year while under the influence of alcohol.
We could post story after story about how experts are not finding any correlation between cannabis use and seriously impaired driving.
But instead we can look back to last week in Denver where an FBI agent was at a bar dancing and presumably having a few drinks when in mid-Footloose-flip his service pistol fell from its concealed location and hit the floor. Panicked, the agent reached to grab it and accidentally fired the weapon injuring a bystander.
Obviously the good governor is outraged at these…these…alcohol “tasting rooms” – right?
HB 18-1258 was passed by the Colorado State Senate by a vote of 57-8 on May 3rd of this year.
On June 4th, Gov. Hickenlooper negated that democratic result with one swoop of his pen.
Considering how liberal his stance is on almost all social issues except for cannabis, Hickenlooper’s relationship with the alcohol industry is a conflict of interest and raw hypocrisy at the very least, if not a blatant abuse of power.