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2020 hopeful Gillibrand unveils plan to legalize marijuana

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand (KEER'-sten JIHL'-uh-brand) has a plan to legalize marijuana and expunge all nonviolent criminal charges associated with it. The New York senator says in a Medium post on Wednesday she'd work with Congress to decriminalize recreational marijuana use and tax nonprescription marijuana products.

Gillibrand says she wants to use the proceeds to support job training and other programs for communities "disproportionately harmed by marijuana laws," especially helping small businesses owned by women and minorities.

Gillibrand would expand medical marijuana research, saying it "can help combat our opioid addiction epidemic" and treat veterans' mental and physical health problems. She wants to ensure access to medical marijuana is covered by private health insurance plans and by federal programs including Medicare, Medicaid and Department of Veterans Affairs health programs.

Gillibrand launched her 2020 campaign in March.

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