Sanders: I would vote to legalize marijuana in California
© Greg Nash

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersBooker holds 'Get Out the Vote' event in South Carolina as presidential speculation builds The Democratic Donald Trump is coming Biden: Trump administration 'coddles autocrats and dictators' MORE told a crowd of supporters in Santa Barbara, Calif., Saturday he would vote "yes" to legalize marijuana in California if he lived there. 


"There will be an item on your ballot in November — if I were a citizen of California, I would vote for that ballot item to legalize marijuana," Sanders said to cheers at one of several California rallies Saturday. 

California voters are expected to decide on whether the state should legalize marijuana in November. The ballot item is still awaiting approval from state officials. 

The measure would allow possession of 1 ounce of marijuana and cultivation of marijuana plants for adults 21 and older. It also would place a 15 percent tax on retail sales of marijuana.

Polls show 60 percent of Californians approve of legalization, while 37 percent say prohibition should continue. 

A similar measure failed to pass in California in 2010. 

Sanders has been outspokenly in favor of marijuana legalization while courting California voters, in hopes of grabbing a large share of the 475 delegates at stake on June 7.

But he has said the issue should be left to state legislatures. Four states, including Washington, D.C., have legalized the drug in some capacity for recreational purposes.

Rival Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWatchdog org: Tillerson used million in taxpayer funds to fly throughout US Republicans cancel airtime in swing Vegas district The Democratic Donald Trump is coming MORE has been relatively silent on the issue, instead saying she supports marijuana research.