Rep. Polis again asks Congress to legalize pot

<p>(Photo: CPR/Irvin Coffee)</p>
<p>Inside the grow operation of Options Medical.</p>

Democratic Congressman Jared Polis has reintroduced a bill that would legalize and tax marijuana-- like alcohol or tobacco. States could then choose to legalize it or not.

Previous attempts to pass the bill have stalled in Congress. But Polis says there’s greater pressure on the federal government to act as more states legalize pot.

“While President Obama and the Justice Department have allowed the will of voters in states like Colorado and 22 other jurisdictions to move forward, small business owners, medical marijuana patients, and others who follow state laws still live with the fear that a new administration – or this one—could reverse course and turn them into criminals,” Polis said in a statement.

He told the Denver Post that the upcoming presidential election makes the bills more important:

"It's important as we head into a presidential election. We don't know if the next president will have the same hands-off approach that Barack Obama and Eric Holder eventually found their way towards.