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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposes state legalize recreational marijuana

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By David K. Li  with NBC News U.S. News
Andrew Cuomo: file photo
Andrew Cuomo: file photo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday called on New York state to fully legalize recreational marijuana, which would open the door for sales, regulation and taxes on the drug.

The governor had previously voiced some support for New York to join the ranks of Alaska, Colorado, California, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Vermont and the District of Columbia that have legal recreational pot.

Monday's address marked a significant shift for Cuomo, who as recently as 2017 had called marijuana a "gateway drug" that could lead to more significant abuse.

In this past year's Democratic primary, Cuomo's opponent, Cynthia Nixon, had called for the legalization of pot, arguing that current marijuana laws unfairly target minorities.