Gov. Chris Christie Says No To Legalized Weed

By Shawn Dwyer 04/10/14

In the first non-Bridgegate news in ages, Christie reaffirmed his opposition to a proposed bill to make recreational use of marijuana legal in New Jersey.

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Looks like he actually said yes. Shutterstock

Much-maligned New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has thrown his weight behind opposing a proposed bill that would legalize recreational weed in the Garden State.

"I'm not going to do that on my watch," Christie recently told a crowd of about 500 people at Winston Churchill Elementary School. "I'm just not. I don't think it’s the right thing to do for our state.

Two weeks ago, State Sen. Nicholas Scutari (D-Linden) proposed legislation that would follow the path blazed by Colorado and Washington in legalizing retail sale of marijuana to people 21 or over. “It will bring marijuana out of the underground market, where it can be controlled, regulated, and taxed just as alcohol has been for decades,” Scutari said.

Scutari was inspired by the tax revenues being brought in by Colorado. The state reported $2 million in tax revenues for January and $3.2 million for February, putting it on pace to exceed the $40 million projections for 2014.

At the time Scutari's bill was brought to light, Christie denounced it outright. “I will not decriminalize marijuana, I will not permit recreational use and I will not legalize marijuana because I think it’s the wrong message to send to the children in this state and to young adults,” he said at the time.

In the past, Christie has supported legalizing medical marijuana and even helped expand the program last year by allowing children to have edible forms of cannabis for those who apply. But he has been emphatic about drawing the line between medicine and recreational use.

"If you want someone who will [legalize marijuana], you're going to have to elect a different governor,” Christie said.

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Shawn Dwyer is a writer, editor and content producer living in Los Angeles. You can find him on Linkedin.