New Jersey's 23rd Legislative District

Senator Michael Doherty

Senator Mike Doherty

Doherty: Democrats’ Backroom Dealing on Pot Will Lead to More Drug Dealing in Our Communities

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Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) said Democratic leaders are cutting backroom political deals that would put convicted drug dealers back on our streets in an effort to secure the votes they need for marijuana legalization within their legislative caucuses.

Sen. Mike Doherty said Democrats are cutting backroom political deals that would put convicted drug dealers back on our streets in an effort to secure the votes they need for marijuana legalization. (©iStock)

“The backroom dealing by Trenton Democrats over legalization is almost certain to lead to more drug dealing in communities across New Jersey,” said Senator Mike Doherty. “That’s what will happen if drug dealers with multiple felony convictions for possessing pounds of marijuana are given a clean slate as part the Democrats’ rush to legalization.”

Doherty said that’s a result of some Democrats in the Legislature demanding so-called “social justice” reforms in exchange for their votes to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in New Jersey.

Their proposal would create an expedited expungement process for serious felony convictions of distributing or possessing with the intent to distribute up to five pounds of marijuana.

“Five pounds of pot is enough to fill a backpack,” said Doherty. “Recreational users aren’t getting caught with that much, just dealers who probably are selling more dangerous drugs too. That’s exactly who Democrats are fighting to help under the false guise of ‘social justice.’”

The legislation also calls for the automatic dismissal at the time of its enactment of any pending criminal charges for the possession or distribution of up to five pounds of marijuana.

“Democrats talk as if they’re just trying to clear the criminal records of teenagers caught with joints in the 1970s, but that’s far from true,” added Doherty. “They’re actually proposing to let hardcore dealers, including those with recent arrests, off the hook. It’s a classic bait and switch, and it’s absolutely outrageous.”

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