Jared Polis takes office Tuesday as Colorado’s new chief executive — and America’s first pot governor.
The Democrat’s long-standing support for legal marijuana, his embrace of the industry as a core part of his campaign agenda and his unique strategy to court cannabis voters in the 2018 election make him the nation’s most pot-friendly politician.
“There is no one that even comes close in my mind to Gov.-elect Polis,” said Christian Sederberg, a prominent cannabis-industry attorney based in Denver.
And the title is far more than a moniker. The governor-elect grabs the state’s reins at a significant moment for the cannabis industry — five years after recreational-marijuana sales began in Colorado and just as the regulations supporting the industry face a legislative review.
The cannabis industry expects Polis to champion their cause, sign legislation that his predecessor vetoed and help the industry reach mainstream status just as legalization spreads to more states and Canada.
“We made no secret of the fact that we supported Gov.-elect Polis mostly because he has been a vocal proponent at the local, state and national levels for our industry — since before it was an industry,” said Dean Heizer, the executive director and chief legal strategist at LivWell Enlightened Health, a prominent marijuana-dispensary chain. [Read [email protected] The Colorado Sun]