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Former Justice Stevens: Legalize pot

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens on Thursday said the federal government should legalize marijuana.

"Yes," Stevens, 94, replied after NPR host Scott Simon asked him whether it should be on his radio show.

"I really think that that's another instance of public opinion [that's] changed. And recognize that the distinction between marijuana and alcoholic beverages is really not much of a distinction,” he added.

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The public generally thinks the prohibition of alcohol is not worth the cost, Stevens said.

“And I think really, in time, that will be the general consensus with respect to this particular drug."

In 2005, when Stevens was still on the Supreme Court, the justices ruled in Gonzales v. Raich that Congress could criminalize the production and use of homegrown pot, even in states where they’ve approved medical marijuana.

Stevens’s statement is not unexpected given he was considered a member of the high court’s liberal side.

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