It's not unusual that politicians get exposed as hypocrites, but sometimes the depth of that hypocrisy is still surprising.
Several prominent Massachusetts politicians who spoke out against the state's referendum to legalize recreational marijuana were at the same time secretly accepting campaign donations from pro-cannabis organizations. The politicians who did so include Governor Charlie Baker, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh and Massachusetts House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo. These three politicians worked together to create the Campaign for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts in 2016, an organization that opposed the state's referendum to legalize recreational marijuana.
It's not particularly surprising that cannabis organizations would donate to these politicians. After all, they want to be in their good graces when marijuana succeeds and becomes legal. But it is hypocritical that these politicians would accept these donations while also decrying those efforts. However, a spokesperson for Governor Baker defended accepting the money.
“Gov. Baker and Lt. Gov. Polito are proud to have broad, bipartisan support for their approach to governing and reaching across the aisle to serve the people of Massachusetts, working with the Legislature, educators, law enforcement and strong public health advocates like the governor’s Cannabis Control Commission appointee Jennifer Flanagan, to responsibly and safely implement the adult use of marijuana and honor the will of the voters,” said Terry MacCormack, a spokesman for Baker said.
However, anti-marijuana advocates in Massachusetts were not as happy.
“It runs against everything they believe in,” said Jody Hensley, a policy adviser for the anti-weed Massachusetts Prevention Alliance. “I think this is carelessness in their campaign office. I just don’t believe that they would accept this knowingly."
Considering the marijuana initiative passed and all these politicians are in office, we think this is one of the rare instances where they were able to have their cake and eat it too.
(h/t Boston Herald)