The explorations primarily focus on the really big issues: climate protection, social justice, financial and fiscal policy. Here it is important to stand firm, to negotiate hard, here the much quoted “red lines” are drawn. Who pays for clean air? Is the speed limit coming? And what about taxes? There is still little agreement on this between the SPD, Greens and FDP – at least what has emerged from the talks so far. It is not inconvenient for those willing to go to the government to come up with a rather small, but no less hotly debated topic, on which the three are moving towards a compromise: the legal distribution of cannabis.
The insight that the previous use of cannabis, which mainly consisted of prohibitions and criminalization, has not been able to reduce consumption. And the fact that the Public Prosecution Service is consuming enormous resources from the judiciary and the police, that a fundamental new path must be taken, can all be found in the election programs of the traffic light scouts. It becomes more difficult with the question of what exactly needs to change in drug policy. The Greens and FDP are calling for the legalization of cannabis and “licensed specialty stores” where adults can buy weed. In contrast, the efforts of the SPD seem rather timid: in pilot projects, a regulated release of cannabis must first be “tested”, according to the election manifesto.
On Wednesday, at least for a short time, it appeared that there was now agreement between the three parties on the topic of drug policy: SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach, who had long strongly rejected the legalization of cannabis, spoke with the Rheinische Post Surprisingly enough to include this in a possible coalition agreement. The reason for the change of heart is a new phenomenon in the drug scene: “We’ve recently had the problem of cannabis being contaminated in the market and cannabis dealers trying to make users dependent on harder drugs,” he said. Süddeutsche Zeitung.
A quick and big reform sounds different
So a small interim success for the traffic light scouts? It doesn’t seem that simple. On the one hand, according to Lauterbach, the subject of cannabis has not even come to the negotiating table. On the other hand, the health expert also backs down a bit when it comes to the practical implementation of legalization: in his opinion, cannabis should initially only be sold legally in model regions. A retail sale, as the Greens and the FDP demand, would be “okay”, but initially only in certain regions and scientifically substantiated. In the long term, says Lauterbach, we need to decriminalize. A quick and big reform sounds different.
Thus, the topic should not be fully discussed yet. The Young Liberals also made this clear: their federal chairman Jens Teutrine wrote on Twitter that the legalization of cannabis was “obviously overdue. Stigmatisation, prohibition and criminalization have failed”. Someone else reacted with little enthusiasm: the Ministry of Health. A spokesperson for Jens Spahn immediately dismissed the case. The traffic light scouts wouldn’t care much about that right now.