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Wednesday - August 8, 2018 5:58 am

Despite poll numbers, Wisconsin lawmakers avoid talks of legalizing pot

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It is an issue that has seen a seismic shift in public opinion in recent years. But despite the growing public support for the idea of legalizing marijuana, Wisconsin state lawmakers still aren't willing to even debate the issue. There have been attempts in the Wisconsin legislature to pass laws dealing with marijuana. In the most recent legislative session, lawmakers considered a number of cannabis related measures, including decriminalizing possession of small amounts of pot, as well as legalizing the medical use of marijuana. They failed. So too did an attempt to put an advisory referendum on the statewide ballot asking whether marijuana should be legalized. Apparently our lawmakers don't even want to know what we think of the idea. The polling however is clear. A majority of people in Wisconsin, 59%, support the legalization of marijuana. And not just for medicinal purposes. They favor legalizing, regulating and taxing marijuana in Wisconsin, just like alcohol is treated. But our lawmakers still won't touch the idea. So a number of Wisconsin communities, including La Crosse county, are putting advisory referendums on the ballots asking voters what they think of legalizing cannabis use. The idea is to show lawmakers the level of support for the idea. But if history is any guide, our elected representatives in Madison will continue to stick their heads in the sand and not recognize who those who pay their salary feel about the issue.

Scott Robert Shaw

Scott Robert Shaw is the Program Director for both 1410 WIZM and 580 WKTY.   He's currently the morning news anchor on 1410 WIZM, Z93 and 95-7 The Rock.  He joined Mid-West Family Broadcasting as a reporter/anchor in 1989 and served as News Director from 1990-2015.   He's been the winner of several Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association awards for Best Editorial in Wisconsin.  He enjoys traveling, bicycling and cooking.

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