New Jersey's 39th Legislative District

Senator Gerald Cardinale

Senator Gerald Cardinale

MEMO on Legalizing Marijuana: Cardinale Addresses Officials, Staff & NJ Press in Advance of Committee Vote

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In advance of  committee hearings on legislation that would legalize marijuana in New Jersey, Senator Gerald Cardinale (R-39) electronically distributed the following letter and data to his fellow legislators in the State Senate and Assembly, legislative committee aides, the Governor’s Office, and the media.

Senator Cardinale also plans to testify in opposition to the legislation (S-2703) at the Senate Budget Committee hearing. The hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Monday, November 26, 2018, in Committee Room 4 in the Statehouse Annex. An audio livestream of the hearing can be accessed here.

Sen. Gerald Cardinale electronically distributed the following letter and data on marijuana legalization to officials, staff, and the media in advance of the Nov. 26 committee hearings on the legislation. (Pixabay)

The full text of the letter, including links to the data, is included below.

Nov. 23, 2018
Dear Colleagues,

There is a cavernous gap between the public’s understanding of marijuana legalization, and reality. Science, public safety studies, and the experiences we are hearing about from those who are living in post-legalization states, such as Colorado and Washington, paint a very different picture.

Our challenge is to educate our colleagues and our constituents on the risks of legalization and shed light on the certain unintended consequences it will have on our children and our culture.

My staff and I have researched this topic for several years. There is a wealth of solid information available which has not received a lot of attention in the State media.

For example, the proponents of legalization are often unchallenged, when they claim that marijuana use is harmless and non-addictive. These assertions are patently false.

Reliable scientific studies have determined, and repeatedly confirmed, that of those who merely experiment with marijuana for the first time, 9 percent will become addicted. Research also shows that 25 to 50 percent of daily marijuana users will also develop an addiction to the drug.

Additionally, traffic fatalities have dramatically risen after legalization. Colorado saw a 48 percent rise in traffic fatalities. In Washington, they doubled. Crime, homelessness, diminished educational achievement, and disparate racial imprisonment, have all resulted or worsened in the aftermath of legalization in states that have chosen to enact this policy. There are a number of other public health concerns that also demonstrate why marijuana is, and should remain, illegal.

While I intend to offer testimony to the Budget Committee on Monday, in the time I will be allotted, I can only scratch the surface. Therefore, I am making available all the data we have accumulated to the Governor, my legislative colleagues, and the press, and any other members of the public who are interested. You need only to access the links and data provided.

Additional Data on Marijuana Legalization
(Note: the following Google Drive links are “Public” and can be viewed by all.)

Data Book 1

Data Book 2

Data Book 3

Data Book 4

Data Book 5

Data Book 6

Data Book 7

Data Book 8

With Gratitude,

Senator Gerald Cardinale
Legislative District 39


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