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Dennis Kucinich Invokes Legalization Of Marijuana With Arab Spring At Hempfest (VIDEO)

Dennis Kucinich Marijuana Legalization

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 08/22/11 01:45 PM ET Updated: 10/22/11 06:12 AM ET

Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) invoked the democratic uprisings in the Middle East known as the Arab Spring while speaking about the American effort to legalize marijuana on Saturday.

Kucinich told listeners it was "time for mass action" during an appearance at Hempfest, an annual gathering of marijuana legalization supporters based in Seattle.

"This is why, and how, recent movements for freedom in Tunisia and Egypt gained momentum,” Kucinich said.

In addition to referencing the Arab Spring, Kucinich also compared proponents of marijuana legalization to suffragettes and civil rights activists.

"This is how Gandhi's march to the sea cast off the British Empire. This is how America's suffragettes gained for women the right to vote. This is how Dr. Martin Luther King's March on Washington became a pivotal moment in the history of the civil rights movement," Kucinich said.

According to The Hill, Kucinich has been considering a run in Washington's first or tenth district if his congressional district disappears after Ohio's redistricting plan is complete next month. Democratic State Rep. Roger Goodman -- a longtime supporter of marijuana legalization and a potential opponent of Kucinich in Washington -- also spoke at the rally.

The Seattle Times reports:

Goodman is an attorney who has long championed marijuana legalization. His reputation is so strong in the pro-legalization community that one fellow Hempfest speaker said Kucinich would be wrong to run against him.

"He (Kucinich) can do anything he wants and this movement will be 100 percent behind him -- except run against Roger Goodman," said Don E. Wirtshafter, a longtime Hempfest activist from Ohio, in an interview.

WATCH: Kucinich speak to the Hempfest crowd:

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