New Jersey Governor Chris Christie apparently doesn’t care much about attracting the votes of America’s marijuana-smoking constituent as he continues to beat around the bush of whether or not he’s going to run for president in 2016.
Appearing on the conservative leaning Hugh Hewitt Show, Chris Christie gave the impression to Hugh that if he becomes president, those marijuana smokers currently enjoying legalized marijuana in places such as Colorado and Washington, would have to once again start hiding their bongs, pipes and rolling papers.
According to Christie, as POTUS, he would “crack down and not permit” any marijuana in any state whether it was legalized marijuana or not, reports CNN.
Hewitt’s interview with Christie drifted into marijuana country when the host brought up legalized marijuana in Colorado and Washington, and how those states are currently “flaunting federal law by allowing people to sell dope legally.” Hewitt then posed to Chris Christie if he would let them do their thing or go after those states and their marijuana-using citizens with federal drug laws.
“Absolutely. I will crack down and not permit it… Marijuana is a gateway drug. We have an enormous addiction problem in this country. And we need to send very clear leadership from the White House on down through the federal law enforcement. Marijuana is an illegal drug under federal law. And the states should not be permitted to sell it and profit from it.”
Chris Christie’s devoutly anti-marijuana stance actually puts him in quite the minority, even among Republicans. Unlike President Obama, who doesn’t support the complete legalization of Marijuana but also says the feds won’t be cracking down on the states that have voted for marijuana legalization, Christie has made his intentions against legal marijuana states very clear.
But Chris Christie’s being such a huge voice against marijuana legalization might not be such a great move, politically at least, according to Jacob Sullum, contributor to Forbes Magazine.
In fact, Chris Christie is the first potential Republican presidential nominee to be such an anti-marijuana advocate and to outline a position that if he were president he would “crack down” on legal marijuana states.
“By contrast,” writes Sullum, “Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush, and Rick Perry all have said that states should be free to legalize marijuana without interference by the federal government.”
Sullum also points out that if Chris Christie thinks his highly vocal anti-marijuana stance will attract some conservatives that otherwise aren’t really Chris Christie fans, he may be in for a rude awakening.
According to Sullum, a survey done last month by the Pew Research Center revealed that, along with Cruz, Bush, and Rand Paul, both Republicans and Democrats think the feds should be hands off when it comes to trying to apply federal marijuana laws to states that have voted to legalize marijuana.
Across the political spectrum, the percentages don’t agree with Chris Christie, the survey showing that 54 percent of Republicans, 58 percent of Democrats and 64 percent of independents, are against the federal government bringing down the anti-marijuana hammer on states with legalized marijuana, and enforcing “federal marijuana laws.”
And since Chris Christie has embraced some pro-marijuana wiggle room in the past, perhaps such surveys will motivate Chris Christie to rethink his views about marijuana legalization.
[Images by Kim Stalknecht and Justin Sullivan, Getty Images]