News, Politics

Beto O’Rourke Makes an Oath to Legalize Cannabis for Texas Veterans

November 4, 2022 08:00 am ET
Beto O’Rourke Makes an Oath to Legalize Cannabis for Texas Veterans

On Tuesday, March 2, a former El Paso congressman announced that he received immense support for cannabis legalization at several veteran town halls. Beto O’Rourke, who secured the Democratic nomination for Texas governor on March 1, had all eyes on him as he made an almighty oath to legalize the plant for recreational purposes as part of his campaign.

“And don’t you think it’s time we legalize marijuana in the state of Texas? I do too. We can get that done,” O’Rouke told reporters as he further edged his way into the good books of advocates across the Lone Star State. Words are one thing, and actions are another, which leaves many people to wonder: Will O’Rourke stand by his promise?

O’Rourke raised more than $25 million in campaign funding between July and September. However, Marist poll results published one week ago revealed that Abbot took the lead with 49% of votes, whereas O’Rourke had bagged 45% of votes.

This is the third campaign O’Rourke has initiated since his 2018 bid for U.S. Senate. Sen. Ted Cruz (R) claimed victory over O’Rourke in the general election by three percentage points.

If elected as Texas’ new governor, O’Rourke strives to “ensure every American can live to their full potential because they have the health care, the education, the access to a high-quality job that pays a living wage, and the access to equal opportunity that they need to thrive fully.” Foreign policy, criminal justice, education, gun regulation, economy, trade, energy, environmental issues, healthcare, immigration, and impeachment are essential facets of his campaign.

About O’Rourke

Born and raised in El Paso, Texas, Beto O’Rourke took on numerous jobs in New York. He is the son of Patrick O’Rourke, who served as a Democratic county commissioner and judge. Beto gained a bachelor’s degree in English from Columbia University in 1995. Some of the roles he was involved with before his return to El Paso in 1998 included proofreading for publisher H.W. Wilson Company, moving art, and working as a nanny.

While running for public office, O’Rourke co-founded an IT consulting company called Stanton Street. Some years later, in 2005, he was elected to serve as a member of the El Paso City Council. The year 2011 saw the end of this position, which was followed by a seven-year reign representing Texas’ 16th Congressional District—a role that was claimed after O’Rourke conquered eight-term incumbent Silvester Reyes in the U.S. House in 2012 with 51% of the vote.

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Support for Cannabis Legalization in Texas Is Rising

A new Dallas Morning News-University of Texas at Tyler poll indicates that 55% of Texans support or strongly support recreational cannabis legalization. The poll findings suggest that 72% of surveyed Texans back medical cannabis, which is currently available under limited circumstances.

O’Rourke emphasized the importance of medical cannabis legalization during a visit to six veteran town halls on the campaign trail. During his visits, he conversed with numerous veterans about their reasons for using medical cannabis. “Veterans say it’s time for this state to legalize marijuana. The people of Texas agree,” O’Rourke tweeted. “Now we just need a governor who will get it done.”

Democratic Party member O’Rourke was a member of the U.S. House, where he represented Texas’ 16th Congressional District. On Jan. 3, 2019, six years after assuming his role in-office, he made his departure. Two years later, on Nov. 15, 2021, O’Rourke publicly declared via Twitter that he would be running for governor of Texas.

The gubernatorial candidate could face stiff opposition in his legalization efforts, with the Texas Republican Party recently updating its platform to feature a motive rivaling the “legalization of recreational marijuana.”

2022 Texas Gubernatorial Election: Candidates and General Voting Information

The 2022 Texas gubernatorial election commences on Nov. 8, 2022. Republican candidates include Paul Belew, Danny Harrison, Kandy Kaye Horn, Former state senator Don Huffines, Rick Perry, Chad Prather, and Allen West. Democratic candidates include Inocencio (Inno) Barrientez, Michael Cooper, Joy Diaz, Rich Wakeland, and Beto O’Rourke.

Balloters can vote by mail, with the early voting period extending from Oct. 24 through Nov. 4. You should send printable mail applications to your county elections office, with the deadline date for local election submissions being Oct. 28. Applications can also be filed by email or fax, but voters must also send physical copies within four business days. Voters should include the last four digits of their social security number and a driver’s license number on their mail ballot application.

For further information about O’Rourke’s campaign pledge, as well as the commitments of other candidates, check out Ballotpedia.

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