Trump Influence In Ohio, Cannabis Legalization, Gun Violence: DeWine Opens Up On Crucial Issues

Zinger Key Points
  • Political differences between Trump and DeWine bubbled to the surface over the last several years, especially over Ohio's COVID-19 response.
  • DeWine says Trump will win Ohio in November. 'Every poll certainly indicates that. He carried Ohio two times by 8 percentage points.'

In a one-on-one interview with a local NBC outlet on Monday, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine (R) discussed several key issues, including Donald Trump, the upcoming launch of legal cannabis and gun violence.

Trump Conviction, Covid Clashes: A Long Relationship Goes Cold

Political differences between the two Republicans bubbled to the surface over the last several years, especially over DeWine’s proactive COVID-19 response as Trump publicly undercut the governor’s health message and poked fun at face coverings.

DeWine also refused to endorse a Trump favorite in a recent GOP Senate primary.

When NBC asked the governor's team for a statement on Trump’s conviction last week on 34 charges of falsifying business records. the network was told he had no comment. That said, DeWine acknowledged Trump’s influence in Ohio. "I think that Donald Trump is going to win Ohio," he said. "Every poll certainly indicates that. He carried Ohio two times by 8 percentage points. I don't see that that is going to change. I think he's going to carry Ohio again."

Warmish On Cannabis, Frigid On Delta-8 THC

Recreational marijuana sales could begin as early as mid-June, though DeWine says more regulation is needed.

"I don't think anybody went to the ballot box and said, ‘I think it's a great idea that if I walk downtown in Xenia, Ohio, or if I walk downtown in Columbus, Ohio, and my child has to go through a bunch of marijuana smoke,'" he said.

He stressed the importance of restricting marijuana use in public areas and preventing advertising and packaging from targeting children, both of which were foreseen in the amendment that legalized recreational cannabis in November 2023.

DeWine is also pushing hard for legislative action on Delta-8 THC, a hemp-derived intoxicating substance widely available and unregulated throughout Ohio. He wants these products regulated to prevent sales to minors.

"This is not hard; the legislature can change this and again I'm asking them to take action to do that," DeWine urged. A bill to restrict Delta-8 sales to dispensaries is pending its first hearing.

Gun Violence Rampant in Ohio: ‘Lock Them Up

DeWine expressed concern over recent mass shootings in northeast Ohio, pointing to several that occurred over the Memorial Day weekend.

"Whenever you have a tragedy like that, you want to get the facts and see, ‘Well, what can we learn from that and is there something we could be done to prevent that,'" the governor said.

"Give the judges the power to lock them up for a long time. These individuals have been told time and time again they're not allowed to have a gun. They give up their right to have a gun because they commit a violent offense in the state of Ohio. We can't have any mercy for those individuals."

These thorny issues will no doubt come up at the Benzinga Cannabis Market Spotlight in New Jersey on June 17. Don't miss this must-attend event in New Brunswick. Secure your tickets now. Very few spots are left. Use the code “JAVIER20” for 20% off!

Related News: Ohio Now Accepting Recreational Marijuana Applications: When Will Sales Begin? Official Can’t ‘Circle A Day’ Just Yet

Photo: Benzinga edit with images by Vivien McClain Photography via Wikimedia Commons and Alesia Kozik via Pexels

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Posted In: CannabisGovernmentNewsRegulationsPoliticsTop Stories2024 electionDonald TrumpGov. Mike DeWineGun ViolenceMike DeWineOhioOhio CannabisOhio cannabis legalizationStories That Matter
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