Like it or not, Texas will eventually legalize marijuana. It's really just a matter of when, not if.

Sen. Roland Gutierrez, D-San Antonio, and state Rep. Joe Moody, D-El Paso, both filed bills last week that would legalize, as well as tax and regulate, the use of marijuana in the state of Texas, and it's about time.

15 states have already legalized recreational use of marijuana, with four states getting on board this past election. 36 states have passed bills for medical use of marijuana. According to the APNews, a recent Gallup poll from earlier in November indicated that 68% of Americans favor legalizing marijuana. That's double the approval rate in 2003, and recent measures that have passed showed strong bipartisan support.

A recent poll on our Facebook page suggested even bigger numbers, with 49 votes for legalization and 10 votes against. The sample size is small, but that works out to about 83% in favor of legalizing marijuana.

According to a report in the Killeen Daily Herald, Sen. Gutierrez estimates that legalizing marijuana could create more that 30,000 jobs in the Lone Star State. That same report cites a study form Vicente Sederberg law firm that says, “If the state regulated cannabis for adult use, it would see an estimated $2.7 billion per year in cannabis sales. A regulated adult-use cannabis market in Texas would result in hundreds of new businesses, creating an estimated 20,000 to 40,000 direct jobs in the cannabis industry, as well as tens of thousands of indirect and induced jobs.”

That's not to mention the millions spent enforcing the laws for possession.

Simply put, the financial upside to legalizing marijuana is massive. So far, the financial benefits haven't tipped the scales yett, but maybe with these new bills Texas can take a step forward.

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