February 23rd, 2014
10:04 AM ET
9 years ago

Four governors on the politics of pot

(CNN) – Four governors - two Republicans and two Democrats - indicated Sunday that their states would not be headed down the same road as Colorado and Washington in terms of legalizing recreational marijuana.

Asked on CNN’s “State of the Union” whether they would consider making pot legal, Texas Gov. Rick Perry was the first to jump in with a flat “no.”

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The outgoing Republican governor, who’s considering a 2016 presidential bid, has said in recent weeks that he favors lowering the penalties of those using marijuana and said policies already in place have helped decrease the prison population in Texas.

“The idea that a kid has one marijuana cigarette and you send him to prison, where they can learn to really be a hardened criminal, is not thoughtful public policy,” he told CNN’s chief political correspondent, Candy Crowley.

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who also hasn’t ruled out a potential White House bid, said he doesn’t support legalization, either.

“That's been my position for a long time and will continue to be,” said Pence, a Republican who took office last year.

Democratic Gov. Dan Malloy of Connecticut said his state has decriminalized small amounts of pot and has moved forward with medical marijuana, but “I think that’s about as far as we go.”

Though Colorado has seen a surge in tax revenues from marijuana sales, Malloy said taxes shouldn’t be considered an incentive to legalize pot.

“They are two distinct issues,” he said. “Let's not be enticed on that road because of money. It just doesn't make sense.”

Gov. Jay Nixon, D-Missouri, also indicated that his state wasn’t heading toward pot legalization but said some in his state are starting to open up about medical marijuana.

“I think our legislature might consider that, but I think to move beyond that at this point is a bridge too far, but that bridge has not yet been built,” he said.

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Filed under: Dan Malloy • Jay Nixon • Mike Pence • Rick Perry • TV-State of the Union
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    ---go ask Colorado. Jump in ocean, idiots.

    February 23, 2014 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  2. HmmmSaysDavidHume

    Looks like 4 governors continue to support an environment where kids aren't carded, organized crime runs the business, de facto Jim Crow prevails, and the murders, gang violence, corruption and wasted tax dollars continue to proliferate.

    They also support the reality that organized crime continues to reinvest their ample, untaxed capital to hire PhD's, MBA's and engineers, along with sophisticated scientific equipment and military weaponry, to devise new, innovative and dangerous drugs, along with sophisticated delivery and distribution systems.

    They support the demand for elaborate and growing tunnels underneath our borders, and whack-a-mole man hunts that allow other killers to escalate their violence in pursuit of market share and the profits that flow to them.

    No, these politicians aren't interested in being anything other than manipulators of the ignorant, imposing the morals of a few on the majority, ad the enrichment of their LEO brethren with our tax dollars.

    Lovely people.

    February 23, 2014 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  3. Terry b

    I see no good reason to keep it illegal but plenty of reasons to make it legal. It's called logic and common sense.

    February 23, 2014 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  4. jboh

    TEA/GOP governors are in the pockets of the for profit prison industry. That industry, and voter suppression, are the only reasons for the current prohibition. No health/safety argument against pot cannot be applied to tobacco. The war on drugs has been every bit as effective as Prohibition was. When Prohibition was repealed, the rate of street crime crashed. By legalizing, criminals will loose their biggest $ maker. Put the crooks out of business. Legalize.

    February 23, 2014 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  5. Thomas

    It's only a matter of time before the dinosaurs die off .

    Then and only then will the sane inherit the earth !

    February 23, 2014 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  6. Gurgyl

    Are guns not bad????? GOP needs this question. Nothing wrong with this, if a guy/gal wants to use it, uses it–are they not using Alcohol? I ave unopened wine, liqueur–I never drink–it is you will-power. GOP better shut up.

    February 23, 2014 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  7. Bill from GA

    A free country should not arrest its citizens needlessly.

    Around 750,000 Americans are arrested yearly in the USA.

    February 23, 2014 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  8. Chris-E...al

    They should make the penalty for pessession like a parking ticket or jay walking .0z one ticket two 0z two tickets ? And if you give to kids jail ! It would clean 0ut jails . If ynu get caught round here 3times with one J its a felony . thats 2 much time for a J !
    that law destroys many a life for a J its stupid .

    February 23, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  9. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Asked on CNN’s “State of the Union” whether they would consider making pot legal, Texas Gov. Rick Perry was the first to jump in with a flat “no.”

    Every time I see Perry try to debate, he giggles like he's on pain killers or mumbles like he's drunk. Maybe he should try some pot; might make him a little more articulate.

    February 23, 2014 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |