Why Congress Should Legalize Marijuana

December 18, 2014

Federal law still outlaws marijuana, but numerous states have now decriminalized, medicalized, or legalized. In the 2014 midterm elections, Alaska, Oregon, and the District of Columbia all passed ballot initiatives that legalize marijuana, following the 2012 legalizations in Colorado and Washington.

What impact have these changes in marijuana law had across the country? Jeffrey Miron, director of economic studies at Cato, will join us to discuss his recently released working paper, “Marijuana Policy in Colorado,” which concludes that “changes in Colorado’s marijuana policy have had minimal impact on marijuana use and the outcomes sometimes associated with use.”

Jeffrey has argued that the United States, as a society that values liberty above all else, should leave adults free to consume marijuana. Moreover, prohibition is a poor method for balancing the costs of drug abuse against the costs of policies that attempt to reduce drug abuse. He looks forward to taking your questions and explaining why it is time for Congress to catch up with the states and legalize marijuana.

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This special online-only series is an opportunity to hear from Cato’s policy staff. Our thanks for your continued support of the Cato Institute. We hope you’ll join in on the discussion.

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