TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Gov. Ron DeSantis at a campaign stop Thursday in North Augusta, South Carolina, said he doesn’t think he would decriminalize marijuana if he became president when asked on behalf of “broken veterans.”
A man who said he was there on behalf of “broken veterans…with service-connected disease, illness and injury,” asked DeSantis if he would decriminalize marijuana in 2025.
“I don’t think we would do that,” DeSantis replied. “But I think what I’ve done in Florida is, we have a medical program through our constitution that the voters did, so the veterans who are in those situations in Florida are allowed access. It’s very controversial, because obviously there’s some people that abuse it and are using it recreationally.”
DeSantis then proceeded to spend nearly two minutes spouting about drugs.
“This stuff is very powerful now that they’re putting on the street, and when these kids do it, it’s really bad for the youth,” DeSantis said.
“We want our kids to stay clear of drugs, and we don’t want to do policies that’s going to make it have easier access for them,” he said. “You don’t even know what they’re putting in some of this stuff now, because you have things like fentanyl that can wind up, and so if you do something with that, it could be goodnight right then and there. You could die just by ingesting that.”
DeSantis said there are too many people using drugs in the United States and that it hurts peoples’ “workforce readiness” and their “ability to prosper in life.”
DeSantis said in his experience growing up in the Tampa Bay area, the kids who used drugs in high school all “suffered.”
“All their activities, all their grades, and everything like that,” he said.
DeSantis also took aim at “wokeness” in the military.
“I don’t think we can meet the challenges that we face from countries like China if we don’t have a very healthy culture in our military,” DeSantis said. “I think we have to make sure that we are not going to let the services be corrupted by left-wing ideology.”
DeSantis said he would make sure people meet requirements based on merit and achievement and not “whether they check any of this box or that box.”