Gary Johnson: Trump admin marijuana policy shift could cost him reelection
© Moriah Ratner

Former Libertarian presidential candidate Gary JohnsonGary Earl JohnsonHillicon Valley: Social media struggles with new forms of misinformation | US, Russia decline to join pledge on fighting cybercrimes | Trump hits Comcast after antitrust complaint | Zuckerberg pressed to testify before global panel Ex-Facebook exec ousted from company sparked controversy with pro-Trump views: report Heinrich wins reelection to Senate in New Mexico MORE warned in a new interview that the Trump administration’s reversal on a key marijuana policy could cost Trump his reelection.

In an interview with the Washington Examiner, Johnson said Trump is “grossly underestimating the anger” that will follow Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsCongress is going to make marijuana moves Trump throws support behind criminal justice bill Bill to protect Mueller blocked in Senate MORE rescinding a Justice Department policy on states legalizing marijuana.

Johnson was named president and CEO of Cannabis Sativa, Inc., a medical cannabis business, in 2014, and is a supporter of marijuana legalization.

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The former Libertarian Party presidential candidate, who received 4.5 million votes in the 2016 presidential election, said he hopes the Trump administration’s shift “dooms” Trump’s reelection chances.

"I hope it dooms his reelection. Trump promised to leave marijuana to the states," Johnson told the newspaper.

On Thursday, Sessions rescinded the Obama-era policy that ordered U.S. attorneys in states where marijuana has been legalized to deprioritize prosecution of marijuana-related cases.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump said he would not seek to halt recreational marijuana sales in states that legalized it.

“I am a states person. I think it should be up to the states,” he said at the time.

Sessions was slammed by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle following the announcement.

Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerTrump, California battle over climate and cause of fires The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by T-Mobile — Dems prepare to aggressively wield new oversight powers California governor's office says focus is on wildfires, not Trump's 'inane and uninformed tweets' MORE (R-Colo.) took to the Senate floor to assert that Sessions had told him before his confirmation as attorney general that he didn’t plan to try to reverse his state’s policies legalizing marijuana, and threatened to block all Justice Department nominees until Sessions “lives up to the commitment that he made to me.”

"I would like to know from the attorney general what has changed,” Gardner said. “What has changed the president's mind? Why is Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpMeet the lawyer Democrats call when it's recount time Avenatti denies domestic violence allegations: 'I have never struck a woman' Trump names handbag designer as ambassador to South Africa MORE thinking differently than what he promised the people of Colorado?”