Gov. Murphy admits to trying marijuana ‘once or twice’

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TRENTON -

Gov. Phil Murphy has admitted to trying marijuana “literally once or twice many years ago,” but says that it’s not really his thing.

The question comes up as the governor pushes to legalize recreational marijuana in New Jersey. Murphy originally hedged when asked this week if he smoked, saying that he had “never been a marijuana guy."

But the governor finally answered the question on Twitter, admitting to trying the drug. Murphy posted, “I don’t have any desire to partake again. But this effort [to legalize recreational marijuana] isn’t about me - this is about social justice.”

Murphy also tweeted, “There are 24,000 marijuana-related arrests each year in NJ, with black residents arrested at three times the rate of white residents. NJ has the largest black-white incarceration gap in the nation - that's shameful, and legalizing marijuana is critical to reducing that disparity.”

Legalizing recreational marijuana was a large part of Murphy’s campaign for governor.

On News 12 New Jersey’s “Ask Gov. Murphy,” many commenters posed questions about when legislation to legalize the substance would be introduced. But so far, has not advanced.

“This is not one you get to overnight. This one takes time and we’re in that process right now,” Murphy said Wednesday, adding that his budget factors in revenue from adult use of legal marijuana. The budget goes into effect Jan. 1.

Murphy also recently expanded the state’s medical marijuana program. An additional 1,500 people were added to the program after it was expanded last month.

Nine states and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational marijuana.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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