Last week’s joint statement from two state governors calling for the rescheduling of marijuana overshadowed another big story: NJ Gov. Chris Christie’s call for an end to the War on Drugs.
Word for word, this is hardly the most scathing indictment of the drug war we’ve ever heard. But it’s big news nevertheless, and for a few different reasons.
Christie is a highly-regarded politician that a quite a few people desperately wanted to see in the republican race for the presidency. He instantly climbs towards the top of any current list of prominent republican political figures favoring drug policy reform. He’s taken seriously in the press, and would have made big headlines with this announcement, were it not for the unfortunate timing.
Moreover, Christie uploaded this statement to YouTube himself. It’s got his name on it, which means the Governor’s office is proud of the position he’s taking and wants the public to know exactly what Chris Christie thinks about the drug war. He understands the broad and growing public support for drug policy reform, and he’s ready to play a role. That’s a promising perspective from a politician who many people think is a potential future republican president.
It’s a shame his comments didn’t get more play, but I have a feeling Chris Christie’s frustration with the War on Drugs will remain on display in the years to come, and as our political culture increasingly comes to grips with evolving public attitudes, he surely will not be the only big name joining the debate.