ALBANY, N.Y. — "If history is any guide, we also know that a lot of decisions go up literally in the last hours when there's more pressure," Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said Saturday.
She is still optimistic New York lawmakers will legalize recreational marijuana in this legislative session, but Governor Andrew Cuomo has doubts.
In an interview with a Rochester radio station, Cuomo said, "The Senate said they supported it. The Senate said they had the votes. When they now say, 'We need the governor to come in to make this happen,' that's a different tune they're now singing."
Originally, legalizing pot was expected to be included in the state budget, passed by April 1.
When that didn't happen, the new goal was to get it done by the end of the legislative session in June.
"We're gonna get it right. That's the beauty of what we do in New York. We didn't have to be first on this, but we have to be right," Hochul said.
However, getting hung up on the details could be causing the delay.
"We have to prepare to ... make sure that we protect young people and the safety in our roads as well as making sure that we don't have a criminal justice system that continues to punish people and treat as a crime something that's completely legal in other states," Hochul said.
Hochul compared this battle to legalizing gay marriage. She calls it an "evolution of views."
Nonetheless, the governor's office being in favor of something isn't enough to change the law.
In that Rochester radio interview, Cuomo said, "I support it, but if they're starting to suggest that I need to twist arms, that's a bad sign because arm twisting doesn't work."
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