During a discussion about solutions to the opioid crisis during last night’s Democratic primary debate, Beto O’Rourke suggested that when pharmaceutical companies go low, we should get high.
The former congressman from El Paso said a veteran he once met wouldn’t have gotten addicted to heroin if the veteran had been prescribed marijuana instead of opioids for his health condition. “Now imagine that veteran, instead of being prescribed an opioid, had been prescribed marijuana, because we made that legal in America [and] ensured the VA could prescribe it,” O’Rourke said.
This was a savvy answer. It clearly won O’Rourke some fans: At the mention of weed, the entrepreneur Andrew Yang, another Democratic presidential candidate, yelled across the stage, “PREACH, Beto.” (And thereby perhaps underscored O’Rourke’s famed youth-pastor energy.) O’Rourke was also in line with the majority of American voters—two-thirds of whom also support legalizing marijuana—as well as the majority of Democratic candidates for president. Joe Biden, the former vice president, whose stance on marijuana is the most conservative of the bunch, has called merely for decriminalizing the substance. [Read more at The Atlantic]
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