The CNN Republican Presidential Debate was shown on September 16th. During this time, Rand Paul, the senator of Kentucky, took Chris Christie, the governor of New Jersey, and Jeb Bush, the governor of Florida, “to the woodshed over their stated policies on marijuana.” Paul attacked Christie and his plans to get rid of both recreational and medicinal marijuana through federal laws. Paul challenged Bush because of his “NO vote on Florida’s 2014 state referendum on medical marijuana.” Here is how Governor Christie responded, which basically summarizes how he feels about marijuana: “If you are getting high in Colorado today… enjoy it until January of 2017, because I will enforce the federal laws against marijuana.”

In addition to this, Christie gave a never-before-seen opinion that incorporates Pro-Life stance with an opposition to the drug war. “If you are a non-violent, non-dealing drug user that you don’t go to jail on a first offense. You go to mandatory treatment,” Christie noted, commenting on his own state’s policy. “You see, Jake, I’m Pro-Life. I think you need to be Pro-Life for more than just the time in the womb.” Through this statement, Christie was able to make it clear that he believes that troubled teens and drug offenders are just as important as fetuses to him. He continued with, “But that doesn’t mean we should be legalizing gateway drugs.” Christie believes that all marijuana users are “low-producers who victimize their employees, their families, and their children.”

According to Paul, Christie is not “really believing in the 10th Amendment” by using federal law to have the final word over state laws, especially those of marijuana. “If a young mother is trying to give her child cannabis oil, or medical marijuana, as a seizure treatment, (Gov. Christie) would put her in jail because it violates federal law.” Christie tried to change his last statement by only referring to recreational marijuana. He said, “We have medical marijuana in New Jersey.” However, Paul came back to refute this with the anti-marijuana federal rules that Christie still planned to use to cut off medicinal and recreational marijuana.

“That’s not consistent with the 10th Amendment, it’s not consistent with state’s rights and it’s not consistent with a conservative vision for the country,” Paul refuted.


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