O’Rourke calls for legalization of marijuana, government stipends for ex-offenders

The former congressman from Texas would combine a newly regulated marijuana market with restitution for policies that resulted in lengthy prison time for low-level drug crimes. The goal is to see that those who were harmed by the strict “war on drugs” policies of the past can now benefit from the money made in the marijuana business.

“We need to not only end the prohibition on marijuana, but also repair the damage done to the communities of color disproportionately locked up in our criminal justice system or locked out of opportunity because of the War on Drugs,” O’Rourke said in a statement.

O’Rourke’s tax would seek to fund a monthly grant program he calls the “drug war justice grant,” which would be given to people who were incarcerated for marijuana offenses.