GOP Debating Marijuana
A major portion of the GOP presidential debate on Wednesday night was focused on marijuana. This is the first time that this has happened during this election season. Instead of expectedly beginning a “new war on drugs,” many of the candidates made it clear that they believed it was the states right to make their own decisions on marijuana; this was able to clear the way for marijuana ballots to be expected no matter who becomes president.
The irony remains in the fact that the candidates were debating in Ronald Reagan’s presidential library – he was absolutely against drugs. Most of the country expected the leaders of the Republican to crack down on drugs completely – even twice as hard now that marijuana is quickly becoming legalized. However, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and former Hewlett-Packard executive Carly Fiorina were the three candidates “who pledged to let local governments do what they want about pot.”
These candidates did not have anything to say about cannabis itself, however, they already seem to have given the four states with voters begging for the drug to be legalized consent. Of course, not all of the GOP had this opinion. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie used to be a prosecutor and is under the impression that federal drug laws “should be enforced on the state level.”
“If you’re getting high in Colorado today,” Christie commented, “enjoy it until January 2017 because I will enforce the federal laws against marijuana.”
Here’s what Rand Paul had to say on the issue: “I don’t think that the federal government should override the states. I believe in the 10th Amendment and I really will say that the states are left to themselves. I would let Colorado do what the Tenth Amendment says. Colorado has made their decision. And I don’t want the federal government interfering and putting moms in jail, who are trying to get medicine for their kid.”
In addition, Paul “landed a racial and social critique” for the existing state that we are in; this included arresting thousands of people for the possession of marijuana, most of which were not white and a part of the lower class. As a result, Jeb Bush entered the conversation where he touched back upon the states’ rights.
“What goes on in Colorado, as far as I’m concerned, that should be a state decision,” he concluded.
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