Newly sworn-in Democratic Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker confirmed in his inaugural address Jan. 14, 2019, that he plans to make good on a campaign promise to legalize marijuana.
“In the interests of keeping the public safe from harm, expanding true justice in our criminal justice system, and advancing economic inclusion, I will work with the legislature to legalize, tax, and regulate the sale of recreational cannabis in Illinois,” Pritzker said in remarks shortly after taking the oath of office.
Pritzker had made legalizing marijuana a centerpiece of his election campaign last year going back to the Democratic primary, during which he held a press conference outside of a medical cannabis dispensary at one point.
Shortly after the Nov. 6, 2018, general election, in which he ousted incumbent Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner, Pritzker said that he wanted to pursue ending marijuana prohibition “right away” following his inauguration.