Campaign aides for Republican vice presidential candidate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) busied themselves this weekend with telling reporters that the candidate “agrees with Mitt Romney” on keeping marijuana illegal, despite him telling a Colorado television station that he supports letting states flout federal laws on medical marijuana.
Romney said earlier this year that he believes “marijuana should not be legal in this country,” calling it “a gateway drug to other drug violations.”
The views would seem to directly clash with what Ryan told KRDO-TV in Colorado on Friday night. “My personal positions on this issue have been let the states decide what to do with these things,” he remarked during a pre-taped interview. “This is something that is not a high priority of ours as to whether or not we go down this issue. But I’ve always believed is the states should make the right to decide.”
Ryan was trying to draw a contrast with President Barack Obama’s apparent hypocrisy in seemingly asking for marijuana consumers to vote for him by promoting popular stoner characters Harold and Kumar in a commercial, even though he’s taken a hardline stance against medical marijuana dispensaries in states where voters have approved them.
Despite Ryan’s comments, campaign spokespeople told reporters on Saturday that Ryan “agrees with Mitt Romney” that marijuana should never be legal — a position that is, unfortunately, incompatible with his prior statement. In order for states to legally permit medical marijuana, the federal prohibition must first be lifted, I.E. the drug must be legalized by the federal government for the states to “decide” on their own.
Ryan voted against medical marijuana as recently as May, casting his ballot against the Hinchey-Rohrabacher amendment to H.R. 5326, which would have done exactly what the Wisconsin Republican claims he now supports by stopping the Obama administration’s raids on licensed medical marijuana vendors. The candidate also has a rating of -10 by the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), the nation’s oldest marijuana lobby.
The only presidential candidates who support marijuana legalization are former New Mexico governor and Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. Colorado is one of 17 states and the District of Colombia that allows marijuana for medical purposes. It is also one of three states voting this fall on whether to tax and regulate the drug like alcohol.
Polling earlier this year by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, Inc. (PDF) found that 74 percent of Americans think the federal government should not interfere with state-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries.
Here are 7 wild, bizarre and pathetic moments from Trump’s ‘campaign launch’
On Tuesday night, President Donald Trump held a rally that was billed as the official launch his re-election campaign — though he has never really stopped holding campaign rallies.
As expected, the president ranted, lied, and engaged in the raucous attacks that are central to his connection with Republican voters. Some of it was actually just sad, such as his continued obsession with Hillary Clinton.
Here are seven of the wildest, disturbing and pathetic moments from the rally:
1. He said Democrats "want to destroy our country as we know it."
Trump casually accuses Democrats of "want[ing] to destroy you and they want to destroy our country as we know it." pic.twitter.com/4K79KlbEeR
British PM candidates clash over Brexit as Boris Johnson skips debate
Candidates to become Britain's next prime minister clashed over Brexit strategy at their first debate on Sunday but the frontrunner, Boris Johnson, dodged the confrontation.
The 90-minute debate on Channel 4 featured the five remaining candidates and an empty podium for Johnson, the gaffe-prone former foreign secretary and former mayor of London.
In sometimes ill-tempered exchanges, four of the five candidates said they would seek to renegotiate the draft Brexit divorce deal agreed with Brussels even though EU leaders have repeatedly ruled this out.
Michael Cohen ordered back to Congress on March 6
President Donald Trump's so-called "fixer" is being asked to return to Congress for more questioning on March 6.
Outside of the closed-door committee hearing Thursday, Cohen said that the House Intelligence Committee is seeking further information, according to Washington Examiner writer Byron York.
Michael Cohen finished closed-door testimony before House Intel Committee, says he's coming back for another session March 6. Again: No reason for secrecy. Transcripts should be released ASAP.
— Byron York (@ByronYork) February 28, 2019