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These 3 Canadian Ministers Will Oversee Legalization Of Cannabis

On Nov. 4, Justin Trudeau officially became Prime Minister of Canada after winning the recent election on campaign promises that included the legalization of cannabis.

All 184 members of Trudeau's Liberal Caucus will eventually vote on reforms to the current laws on cannabis, but three cabinet ministers, in particular, will be the driving forces behind the eventual end of prohibition.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould will be in charge of reforming cannabis laws. Health Minister Jane Philpott will be tasked with monitoring the medical impact of cannabis use among Canadians. And Finance Minister Bill Morneau will manage the economics of regulation - including cannabis taxation.

Here's an overview of who these ministers are and where they stand on this issue.

1. Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice

Wilson-Raybould's background includes working as a prosecutor, a British Columbia Treaty commissioner and a regional chief of the Assembly of First Nations.

During the recent campaign, she was endorsed by Sensible BC, a pro-legalization group that singled out Wilson-Raybould as a candidate who could help defeat Conservative politicians who opposed legalization.

"Our goal is to elect the most cannabis-friendly candidates who have the best chance of beating the Conservatives," said Sensible BC director Dana Larsen.

We couldn't find any record of Wilson-Raybould's views on cannabis reform, so it may have just been a general endorsement of the party's position. But there's no doubt Larsen and other activists will be expecting much of the minister tasked with overhauling Canada's cannabis laws.

Wilson-Raybould is from the B.C. riding, Vancouver-Granville, which may have influenced Trudeau's selection process because the province is the leader on cannabis reforms nationwide.

2. Jane Philpott, Minister of Health

Dr. Philpott's is a family doctor in Markham, Ontario, teaches at the University of Toronto, and leads numerous community health initiatives. She also practiced medicine in Niger for a decade, and helped set up training program for village health workers.

During the recent election campaign, she became an outspoken proponent of the Liberal Party's plan to legalize cannabis. She used her Twitter account to rebut statements by former Toronto police chief and Conservative cabinet minister Julian Fantino:

She also engaged with the public on her Facebook page:


3. Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance

A millionaire businessman, Morneau's was the executive chairman of Morneau Shepell - Canada's "largest manager of private-sector pensions" according to Business News Network. He was also the chair of the C.D. Howe Institute and one of Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne's advisers on the Ontario Pension Plan.

He will be tasked with fulfilling Trudeau's promises to bolster the Canada Pension Plan, increasing taxes on Canada's wealthiest 1 percent and figuring out a tax regime for a legal cannabis market.

Morneau did not explicitly support legalization, but NORML Canada reached out via Twitter before the polls closed Oct. 19.

h/t BNN, CBC, Huffington Post, CFRA, Vancourier, Globe and Mail,,,


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