New Jersey Governor Chris Christie pledged on Sunday that if he were elected president, he would end legal marijuana in Washington and Colorado.
Christie’s candid views on marijuana legalization came out on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” show in response to a question from host John Dickerson.
“If you were president would you return the federal prosecutions in the states of Colorado, Washington states?” Dickerson asked, according to NJ.com.
“Yes,” Christie stated, adding that he refuses to hide his positions for the sake of political pandering.
“I think there’s probably a lot of people in Colorado who are not too thrilled with what’s going on there right now,” Christie said, the Inquisitr reports. “You know the way you win any state? You go out and you tell people the truth and you lay out your ideas. And you either win or you lose. But I don’t believe that people just want to be told what they want to hear. I believe they want to be told the truth as the person who’s running sees it.”
Although illegal under federal law, the Obama administration has instructed the Department of Justice not to challenge states that move forward with legalization, so long as tight regulation accompanies a much looser stance towards the drug.
Public opinion polls place nation-wide support for marijuana legalization at around 53 percent, as indicated from Pew Research’s latest survey in April. This figure has risen by 20 percent in just a decade.
Christie has previously been a thorn in the side of efforts to legalize marijuana in New Jersey, arguing that marijuana is a gateway drug. When a coalition aimed at legalized the drug launched in late February, Christie fired back that he’ll veto any proposals that pass through the legislature.
New Jersey already has a medical marijuana program, but New Jersey United for Marijuana Reform is interested in serious legalization alongside a regulatory and taxation framework, though Christie doesn’t think tax revenue is worth the costs imposed by the drug on quality of life. But proponents of marijuana reform are optimistic because Christie’s second term as governor ends in 2017, meaning that on the state level, his political blockades will drop, as he can’t run for governor again.
By the end of June, Christie said that he’ll decide whether to run for president as a Republican candidate.
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