In the past, a politician admitting to using marijuana was a giant scandal that could possibly derail their entire career. Today, it isn't nearly as controversial as it was back then. And apparently in Illinois, it might as well be required for being a Democrat.
The top three candidates for the Democratic nomination for Illinois' governor's race have all admitted to using marijuana in the past. State Senator Daniel Biss, Businessmen J.B Prtizker and Chris Kennedy all released statements acknowledging that they had used cannabis in the past, but no longer do. The two Republicans in the race, including current Governor Bruce Rauner, have declined to comment on their marijuana use.
Of those three Democrats, both Pritzker and Biss have stated their support for legalizing recreational marijuana if elected governor. In fact, Pritzker's admission of cannabis use was made at a press conference in which he detailed his plan to create jobs for minority communities in the marijuana industry, if elected. Kennedy has stated that he support decriminalization and expanding the state's medical cannabis program, but says more research needs to be done before he'd support full legalization.
The Illinois governor's race is one of the biggest elections of 2018 for Democrats. Incumbent Republican Bruce Rauner is one of the least popular governors in the country, and polls have shown him trailing a generic Democratic candidate by more than 10 percent. All of this means this is one state where Democrats could retake the governor's mansion. And if either Biss or Pritzker ended up being that Democrat to take over, it also means Illinois would become a prime target for recreational marijuana legalization.
(h/t Chicago Tribune)