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Justin Trudeau has changed his tune on the issue of marijuana in Canada.

The Liberal leader discussed the subject at two different events in late July, saying his thoughts on the issue have evolved and he thinks decriminalizing, legalizing, and taxing cannabis would be the best way to end the war on drugs.

Trudeau pointed out that the current approach is not working, and that Canada would do well to follow in the footsteps of Washington State and Colorado, both of which legalized marijuana last year.

“I did a lot of reading, and a lot of paying attention to the very serious studies that have come out and I realize that going [down] the road of legalization is actually a responsible thing to look at and do,” he said.

His comments have invoked outrage from Conservative opponents who said they would maintain their stance against loosening Canada’s marijuana laws. Employment Minister Jason Kenney expressed disappointment with Trudeau via Twitter when he used the hashtag “irresponsible” after hearing from the head of a drug treatment centre for adolescents who was outraged by Trudeau’s change of heart.

Trudeau responded by saying that he would not encourage people to smoke pot, but that studies have shown that it is no worse for people’s health than alcohol or cigarettes, both of which are legal around the world.

—KayCie Gravelle