Chris Christie Will Enforce Federal Marijuana Laws, Doesn’t Matter if Sick Kids Will Benefit


Imagine being forced with the choice of either breaking state and federal law or watching your child suffer. That was the tragic choice put before the parents of Vivian Wilson, who chose to move to Colorado to acquire the medicine needed for her Dravet syndrome. The Wilson family wanted to comply with New Jersey’s medical law, but the restrictive nature made that impossible.  At a New Hampshire press conference, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie displayed no sympathy for the Wilson family and stated that he would enforce federal law if elected president.

Chris Christie has been consistent in his claims about enforcing federal marijuana law. However, he has been inconsistent about states always following federal law, as Jon Stewart pointed out when Governor Christie has supported gambling in New Jersey. What is rather remarkable about Christie’s insistence that federal law must be enforced, besides offering no apologies or sympathy for parents with a severely ill child, is that he seems to forget about prosecutorial discretion.

Prosecutors don’t prosecute every single crime, resources dictate prioritization. With all of the issues facing our nation, it is amazing that a president would consider prosecuting and imprisoning parents treating their child’s Dravet syndrome with medical cannabis, when that has been proven to work best for their child.

Governor Christie also seems to miss the fact that medical cannabis is still illegal under federal law. As president, will he use the limited resources of the federal government to arrest, prosecute and jail everyone legally cultivating, using and providing medical cannabis under their state law. As POTUS, would he immediately arrest everyone participating in the New Jersey medical marijuana program? Fortunately, for medical patients across the nation, Chris Christie is languishing in the polls and won’t be elected next President of the United States. Not often does a candidate appear more compassionate than Ted Cruz or Donald Trump, but Chris Christie (and Marco Rubio) have somehow accomplished that.

Featured photo credit: J Scott Applewhite/AP


Anthony Johnson

Anthony, a longtime cannabis law reform advocate, was Chief Petitioner and co-author of Measure 91, Oregon's cannabis legalization effort. He served as director of both the New Approach Oregon and Vote Yes on 91 PACs, the political action committees responsible for the state's legalization campaign. As director of New Approach Oregon, Anthony continues to work towards effectively implementing the cannabis legalization system while protecting small business owners and the rights of patients. He sits on the Oregon Marijuana Rules Advisory Committee and fights for sensible rules at the legislature as well as city councils and county commissions across the state. Anthony helps cannabis business comply with Oregon's laws and advises advocates across the country. He also serves as content director of both the International Cannabis Business Conference and the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference, helping share the vision of moving the cannabis industry forward in a way that maintains the focus on keeping people out of prison and protecting patients. He was a member of the Oregon Health Authority Rules Advisory Committee, assisting the drafting of the administrative rules governing Oregon’s state-licensed medical marijuana facilities. He first co-authored and helped pass successful marijuana law reform measures while a law student at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. He passed the Oregon Bar in 2005 and practiced criminal defense for two years before transitioning to working full-time in the political advocacy realm. His blogs on Marijuana Politics are personal in nature and don't speak for or reflect the opinions of any group or organization.