New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is one of the biggest marijuana opponents in America. So much so that he threatened to veto a marijuana decriminalization measure in New Jersey if it were to have reached his desk. He also promised as a candidate while on the presidential campaign trail to shut down legalization policies in states that have voted to end cannabis prohibition. Christie’s love for reefer madness was on full display in Indiana this week, where he was the keynote speaker at an event dedicated to fighting the opioid and prescription drug crisis. Per Fox 59:
When it comes to marijuana, Christie believes legalization would make people more likely to get hooked on other drugs.
“Marijuana legalization will lead to more drug use, not less drug use, will lead to more death not less death, and the national institute of drug abuse has proven it. There is no reason, if I told you today that anything would make your child two and a half time more likely to be addicted to opioids, you would be getting them as far away from it as you possibly could,” he said.
Chris Christie’s claim that marijuana legalization will cause an increase in deaths is unfounded. In fact, a study from earlier this year found the exact opposite effect. Researchers who led the study concluded that, “Legalization of cannabis in Colorado was associated with short-term reductions in opioid-related deaths.” A number of studies have found that increased access to cannabis has been associated with a significant reduction in the use of opioids and prescription drugs. Chris Christie goes to the ‘gateway drug’ argument early and often when he is talking about cannabis, despite the fact that the cannabis gateway drug myth has long been debunked, with even the DEA conceding as much. Fortunately for the citizens of New Jersey someone will be taking Chris Christie’s place as the Governor of New Jersey in the near future, although I suspect people will continue to book Chris Christie as a speaker at events for whatever reason.