As most on this board will agree, actual conservatives are/should be fervently against the WOD and the power it gives the federal government. Not to mention the inherent anti-liberty and anti-freedom qualities of prohibition.
What happened on Tuesday in Colorado and Washington has created a HUGE opening for the GOP. Contrary to public opinion, Democrats are the main opponents to legalization. In Colorado, the Dem Governor publicly opposed (and made some pretty off color remarks following the bill's passage). In Washington, it was the Democrat Governor who publicly opposed the measure. In Oregon (who defeated the bill), it was the Democrat Governor who opposed the measure. Additionally, the new WA and CO laws are going to create a massive showdown between the Democratically controlled fed government and the states. The DOJ is already planning to take action against these states and Obama has been on record since 2004 as completely opposed to legalization.
Here's where the GOP has the advantage. Democrats CAN'T support legalization. Anyone care to guess why?
The largest groups who oppose legalization (at the state levels) are teacher's unions, Sheriff's unions, and prison unions. Democrats cow tow to these group because that is who funds a lot of their campaigns. I do not have the 2012 figures, but in the 2008 election cycle Teacher's unions (not the evil corporations, man) contributed more to political campaigns than any other group. By a LOT (72 million vs 60 million for the second place spender). Teacher's unions were the biggest spenders in opposition to the 2010 California legalization bid. With Sheriff and prison unions contributing quite a bit as well.
Dems are chained to these groups. They don't support legalization/decriminalization, so dems don't support legalization/decriminalization.
This is the opening for the GOP to rehab their image as old, out of touch racist white people. This is their chance AND it is inline with fiscal conservatism and libertarian (AKA fundamentally conservative) principles.
You know who crushed Romney in Tuesday's election? Blacks, Latinos, and young people. You know who opposes the war on drugs? Blacks, Latinos, and young people.
It's time for the GOP to realize that this is what is coming. Legalization IS going to happen. It's just a matter of when. Eventually public support (which is already over 50% today) will be so great that the Dems can tell the unions to frick off on this issue.
It's time for the GOP to get in front of this issue and fight to end the decades of failed policy (that neither party has tried to stop...yet).
I'm not saying this is what the GOP needs to base its 2016 platform on. Not at all. But it should be a solid part of the platform. Force this conversation into the public. Force the democrats to support the War on Drugs publicly. The GOP has an image problem of being stuck in the past on social issues. This is perfect opportunity to change that image.
What say you?
Personally, I say the GOP is too stupid to get out in front of this issue and will let the democrats champion it successfully in 20 or so years.
This post was edited on 11/8 at 3:42 pm