News and Commentary

BRILLIANT: Mayor Pete Wants to Decriminalize ‘Meth, Coke, Ecstasy’ And Heroin
Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, IN, stands for a portrait after speaking at Gibson's Bookstore in Concord, NH on April 6, 2019. Buttigieg recently launched a presidential exploratory committee.
Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Pete Buttigieg is mayor of South Bend, Indiana.

The crime rate in South Bend is higher than 96% of all U.S. cities, according to Drugs are rampant in the city, which lies east of Chicago. The incarceration rate is also soaring in Indiana, according to

So, of course, it makes sense that Buttigieg, who is running for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, wants to legalize all kinds of drugs.

“Incarceration should not even be a response to drug possession,” Buttigieg told editors and reporters at the Des Moines Register.

“Is that across the board? So if it’s meth or coke or ecstasy, any drugs, if it’s possession, incarceration isn’t…” one editor asked.

“That’s right,” Buttigieg said.

“I would not have said even five years ago what I believe now, which is that incarceration should not even be a response to drug possession,” said Buttigieg, who earned degrees from both Harvard University and Oxford University. “What I’ve seen is that while there continue to be all kinds of harms associated with drug possession and use, it’s also the case that we have created — in an effort to deal with what amounts to a public health problem — we have created an even bigger problem. A justice problem and its form of a health problem.”

Buttigieg explains his stance on his campaign website, saying he would do away with prison time for any kind of drug possession. “Eliminate incarceration for drug possession, reduce sentences for other drug offenses and apply these reductions retroactively, legalize marijuana, and expunge past convictions,” his Criminal Justice Reform web page says.

The plan did not go over well with Bill Bennett, the former White House drug czar during President George H.W. Bush’s tenure.

“This is crazy. This is a bright guy. I don’t agree with him, but obviously he’s a guy of some subtlety and intellect,” Bennett told Fox News. “No subtlety here. He acknowledges the harm that these drugs do—goodness gracious, it’s incredible the harm these drugs do.”

“We have a terrible problem going on in this country,” he added. “We do not need to encourage more of it.”

Bennett also said “the legalization movement, one of the hypotheses there was that it would end the black market of drugs. With legal marijuana, the black market would disappear.”

But that hasn’t happened.

“The black market has grown because it undercuts the legal market by selling cheaper, of course it’s easier to hide the black market when you have legalization going on,” he said. “But again, why would one want to encourage more of this? Ninety-five percent of the people who would get into trouble with heroin, with cocaine, with meth, started with marijuana. The marijuana that’s out there now is four or five times stronger than the marijuana in the 60s or 70s.”

And Bennett said even marijuana — which is being legalized in many states across the U.S. — can cause major problems with users.

Cannabis “leads to mental problems, serious mental impairment, lack of focus—not good for students obviously—anxiety, and then later in life, it can lead to psychosis, and often does.”

“Sorry to be worked up on this, but this is just nuts what we’re doing here,” Bennett said.



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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  BRILLIANT: Mayor Pete Wants to Decriminalize ‘Meth, Coke, Ecstasy’ And Heroin