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IP to push for the legalization of marijuana in Minnesota

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Delegates attending the Independence Party of Minnesota's state convention in St. Cloud today adopted a party platform that calls for the legalization, taxation and regulation of marijuana.

"Party members spoke to allowing for personal choice and individual responsibility throughout the convention," said Kyle Lewis, Independence Party executive director.

The plan would put the Independence Party on the forefront of a growing national movement calling for the legalization of marijuana. Voters in Colorado and Washington passed ballot measures in November that allowed for the recreational use of marijuana.

No one in the Minnesota Legislature proposed a bill this year that would have legalized marijuana but there is likely to be a push next year to allow it for medicinal purposes.

The Independence Party also passed a resolution that would lift the party's ban on special interest PAC money. The ban on PAC money has been considered a "core tenant" of the IP since its formation in 1992 (it was initially founded as the Reform Party of MN).

The IP has held major party status in Minnesota since Jesse Ventura was elected governor in 1998.

Party leaders also re-elected Party Chair Mark Jenkins of Maplewood to a second full term.