New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie yesterday reiterated to a crowd of about 500 students and parents that recreational marijuana laws in his state aren't changing under his watch. It sends the wrong message to kids, he says.
Apparently locking up their brothers, sisters and parents for up to six months for as little as a joint does send the right message in Christie's world.
"Let me be clear on this: I'm not, as long as I'm governor, going to permit the decriminalization or recreational use of marijuana," Christie said to the crowd. "If you want someone who will, you're going to have to elect a different governor."
The comments stem from a confrontation with an emotional Paula Joana, who said that her 15-month-old daughter died of a massive, 24-hour seizure in December. Joana says that her daughter could have benefited from high-CBD oil that is legal in the state now, but is still nearly impossible to get due to state regulators dragging their feet. He told another mother of a child suffering from Crohn's disease that he is working to speed up that process, but said he wouldn't decriminalize anything to speed up access.
"They want tax revenue from legalization," Christie told the crowd in Sayreville, New Jersey last night. "It's the motivation for the bill and I am not going to turn our state into a place where people fly in to get high for tax revenue. I've made it very clear since 2009 that I oppose this ... it's not going to happen under this [governor] under any circumstances."
Gambling in New Jersey, on the other hand, that's okay. You can booze and throw your money away in a casino all you want and Christie will take your money.
Currently, possession of 50 grams or less is a "disorderly person" charge with up to six months in jail and $1,000 in fines. Get caught with more than 50 grams, and you're looking at a felony with up to $25,000 in fines and 18 months in jail. Growing penalties are also stiff: cultivation of an ounce or more is a felony with a mandatory three years in jail. Even simply being under the influence of marijuana anywhere in the state is illegal.