Candidate for Oregon Governor Says “It Might Be” a Good Idea to Tax and Regulate Marijuana

Apr 30, 2010

Bill Bradbury, debate, governor, John Kitzhaber, Oregon

In a live televised debate Wednesday night between Oregon’s two Democratic candidates for governor, one — former Oregon Secretary of State Bill Bradbury — said he thinks “it might be” a good idea to legalize and tax marijuana like we do alcohol. While his complete statement didn’t come off as a whole-hearted endorsement for marijuana policy reform, Bradbury’s answer was much more promising than that of his opponent, former Gov. John Kitzhaber, who said plainly, “I do not support legalizing marijuana or taxing it as a form of income to support schools and other important public services.”

Both candidates said they supported measures that would add dispensaries to Oregon’s medical marijuana law.

Here is Bradbury’s entire answer to the question of whether it would be “a good idea” to tax marijuana like alcohol:

“It might be. But you know, I have a feeling the federal government would pretty quickly step in and say, ‘Sorry, you can’t do that.’ […] I’ve got to tell you, I just don’t think that’s a very realistic solution to the significant revenue problem the state of Oregon is currently facing.”

You can watch a clip of both candidates’ responses by scrolling down on this link. The exchange about marijuana policy occurs in the third video, with about 5:13 remaining.