The Australian Greens have announced that new legal advice means that cannabis legalisation could be implemented by 2023, reports news.com.au.
NWS Greens senator David Shoebridge said that his office had received fresh legal advice stating that cannabis could be legalised due to the commonwealth’s power which would override all state legislation currently criminalising cannabis use. According to news.com.au, constitutional law expert and dean of law at Australian Catholic University, Patrick Keyzer advised The Greens that cannabis could be legalised by using the commonwealth’s power to regulate plant variety rights under section 51 of the constitution.
“In short, the commonwealth can regulate the cultivation, licensing and sale of cannabis,” said The Greens. This includes all ancillary machinery provisions needed to create a legal national market for cannabis. “Once this occurs, all state and territory laws contrary to the use of cannabis under the commonwealth laws (being the current state criminal sanctions) would cease to have effect,” The Greens said, adding that they were working on a new Bill to deliver to parliament.
Independent Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie spoke out against the new push for cannabis legalisation saying that she would prefer to focus on medicinal cannabis being made more available.