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Photo: Steve Elliott/Reality Catcher
Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson at Portland Hempstalk 2010 in September

​​Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson could bring the issue of marijuana legalization into the 2012 Republican presidential primary if he decides to run.

“The issue of marijuana legalization is already an attention-getter,” Johnson told Marc Caputo of the St. Petersburg Times after a visit to Florida last week to test the political waters. “And you can’t shy away from it. I have to defend it. I have to defend the position.”
According to Johnson, marijuana is less harmful than alcohol, and arresting and locking up pot smokers costs too much, both in terms of civil liberties and for the taxpayers.