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CNN  — 

States are on the march toward marijuana legalization, and New York is the latest one to be a step closer to fully legalizing adult use.

More states are in the pipeline, especially along the East Coast. Here’s just a sampling: 

  • Virginia: The Democratic-controlled Legislature has already sent a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana to Gov. Ralph Northam, who supports the measure. But he’s now under pressure to amend the bill to make the law go into effect sooner than 2024.
  • Pennsylvania: A bipartisan effort is underway in Pennsylvania’s Legislature to fully legalize, a step beyond the state’s current legal medical marijuana operations. The Keystone State’s governor and lieutenant governor have been vocal supporters of legalization efforts, though multiple bills have failed in previous legislative sessions because of GOP opposition. 
  • New Mexico: Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a Democrat, included legalization in her legislative priorities this year. Though the bill hit some roadblocks in the legislative session this month, Grisham announced there would be a special session to get it done.

Currently, only 15 states have voted to legalize full, adult marijuana use. But the state-by-state movement goes to show that the shifting attitudes toward criminal justice and marijuana use (and perhaps some recognizing a new revenue source) are bringing about real policy changes at the state level.

All of this comes as the Biden administration is being criticized for its own strict policies toward marijuana use among White House staffers. 

The Point: States’ moves toward marijuana legalization continue, despite the federal government’s inaction.