On Marijuana, Right and Left Get Along

Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page wonders whether the diverse coalition in support of legalization of the drug signals that "maybe we can all get along."

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Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page wonders whether the diverse coalition in support of legalization of the drug signals that "maybe we can all get along."

I am encouraged by the surprisingly bipartisan coalitions that backed recent state victories for marijuana legalization, gay marriage and prison sentencing reform. Maybe we all can get along.

What makes these coalitions so remarkable is how much their members disagree on almost everything else.

That happy thought brought liberals together with libertarian tea party conservatives in Colorado and Washington to put marijuana legalization over the top in each state.

The Colorado cause benefited from vigorous fundraising and, among other supporters, a high-profile endorsement by former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, a libertarian Republican and tea party favorite.

Washington residents similarly won the backing of mainstream nonhippie figures like Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes, who has long favored legalization, regulation and taxation over what he calls "nanny state laws."

As a result, proponents proudly noted, the Colorado measure received more votes than President Barack Obama, who carried the state by 5 percentage points.

Read Clarence Page's entire piece at the Chicago Tribune.

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