Harris: Marijuana Offenders Should Be 'First in Line' for Cannabis Industry Jobs

2020 candidate says they've got experience 'selling weed'

December 2, 2019

Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.) said Sunday that people convicted for marijuana charges should be first in line for jobs in the legalized cannabis industry, noting with amusement they had experience "selling weed."

Harris said anyone convicted on marijuana charges should have their record expunged and be put "first in line" for jobs in the new industry, which she called a "cash cow."

"There's no difference," she said. "The people who are making now a whole lot of money, what are they doing? Selling weed! Before this happened, what were those folks doing? Selling weed! When you're looking for a job, experience needed, they've got experience."

Harris, as is her habit, laughed loudly at her own comment.

Harris has faced criticism on the 2020 campaign trail for her aggressive record of prosecuting marijuana violations as California attorney general. Nearly 2,000 people were imprisoned for marijuana-related offenses during her tenure. California is among the 11 states to legalize the use of recreational marijuana, doing so in 2016.

2020 rival Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D., Hawaii) assailed Harris for her record during a Democratic debate in July and said the senator should apologize. Gabbard also attacked Harris for admitting she smoked marijuana in college.

Harris is campaigning heavily in Iowa as she tries to keep her fading 2020 hopes alive. Her poll numbers have collapsed since the summer, and the New York Times published a scathing report last week describing a rudderless campaign.