Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announces support for legalization of recreation marijuana

ARLINGTON, Va. (FOX 5 DC) -- Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced his support for legalizing recreational marijuana in the Commonwealth in an op-ed over the weekend, vowing to work with Virginia leaders to take steps toward legalization.

Herring, a Democrat, is the first statewide official to call for legalization, while others have announced support for decrminialization.

Herring said laws criminalizing marijuana disproportionately affect African Americans and other people of color.

"Virginia's policy of criminalizing minor marijuana possession is not working. It is needlessly creating criminals and burdening Virginians with convictions," Herring said in Newport News' Daily Press.

The Virginia GOP responded to Herring's announcement by taking a shot at this blackface scandal.

"Mark Herring is trying to do anything he can to distract from his own racist past. The best time for Herring to resign was in February, the second best time is right now," said John March, Virginia GOP spokesman.