Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America recently raised concerns about marijuana legalization, according to a July 29, 2016, report at Marijuana.com.
The revelation of the alcohol industry’s concerns was a minor part of the WikiLeaks release of Democratic National Committee emails suggesting an attempt to tarnish former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and help Hillary Clinton win the party’s nomination for president.
The released emails included a daily e-newsletter called the Huddle, a Politico product which is sent to Washington, D.C., insiders. Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America paid for an advertisement which appeared at the bottom of the newsletter’s May 24, 2016, email edition, but did not appear in the online version. While saying the group remains neutral on legalization, the ad read in part, “In the years since the state legalized medicinal use, Colorado law enforcement officials have documented a significant increase in traffic fatalities in which drivers tested positive for marijuana.”
The ad went on to call for legislation “to document the prevalence of marijuana impaired driving, outline impairment standards and determine driving impairment detection methods.”
Morgan Fox, communications manager for the Marijuana Policy Project, responded to the ad by saying in part, “[G]iven that driving under the influence of marijuana is already illegal and that the existing research shows marijuana’s effect on driving ability is significantly less than alcohol, it is difficult to see a legitimate reason for the alcohol industry to be taking up this issue.”