Tennessee Democratic lawmakers Sen. Heidi Campbell and Rep. Bob Freeman have announced plans to introduce a bill in the coming days that would legalize adult-use cannabis.

Campbell noted that many states surrounding Tennessee have already legalized cannabis either recreationally or medically. “Let’s not delude ourselves that people aren’t crossing the border and getting cannabis from other states. Of course, they are,” Campbell told WKRN News. “So, that’s just income we’re missing out on.”

The lawmakers also noted that in the event of federal legalization, which they both believe will eventually happen, the state would “theoretically miss out on tax revenue more than it is right now,” the news outlet reported.

Freeman also said he wants to pass the bill to help low-income communities negatively impacted by the war on drugs.

“If you live in a wealthy part of the state and a wealthy community in our city, the odds of you getting a slap on the wrist and nothing happening is pretty high,” Freeman said. “If you live in a [low-income] neighborhood, and you get picked up with cannabis, you’re going to jail.”

When asked how confident they were of the bills passing on a scale of one to 10, Freeman said 7 or 7.5, while Campbell was less convinced. “I’m pretty low. I won’t give you a number, but I have no delusions that we’re going to pass it this session,” she said, adding, “Regardless, it’s important to keep the conversation around cannabis alive.”

Other lawmakers applauded Campbell and Freeman’s announcement:

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>The legalization of cannabis in Tennessee is long overdue. For too long, much of the TN GOP has stood in the way. Thanks to Democratic leaders <a href=”https://twitter.com/Campbell4TN?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@Campbell4TN</a> and <a href=”https://twitter.com/VoteBobFreeman?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@VoteBobFreeman</a> for leading this initiative. Let’s do this in 2023! <a href=”https://twitter.com/TNDemocrats?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@TNDemocrats</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/TNSenateDems?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@TNSenateDems</a> <a href=”https://t.co/hl4jxvZOCq”>https://t.co/hl4jxvZOCq</a></p>&mdash; John Ray Clemmons (@JRClemmons) <a href=”https://twitter.com/JRClemmons/status/1603759717985271811?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>December 16, 2022</a></blockquote> <script async src=”https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>