Act leader Don Brash wants the use of cannabis decriminalised, saying too much valuable police time is taken up enforcing a law that is flouted by about 400,000 people a year.
Former Police Minister and Act Epsom candidate John Banks could not be reached for comment last night.A spokeswoman for Prime Minister John Key said: “National has long held the view this would be a step in the wrong direction.”
Police Minister Judith Collins also said Act’s cannabis policy was going in the wrong direction.
Once again, here’s the Lancet’s Drug Harm Index:
The status quo is that the state spends a vast sum (Brash estimates $100 million per year) and uses the power of the criminal justice system to destroy thousands of lives – for no gain. The only people who profit from the status quo are criminal organisations that are enriched by drug prohibition, and politicians who pretend they’re getting ‘tough on crime’ because they’re locking up potheads.
I doubt Key’s position is based on polling – this is just a gut-instinct response. And I predict that the majority of the population will support decriminalisation. That isn’t going to make them vote ACT, of course. I think the Venn diagram of potential ACT voters and people who support drug liberalisation has a pretty tiny intersection.