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Rick Perry on Drugs

Republican Governor (TX)


Fight cross-border violence as part of drug war

We should continue our investment in border security because the threat of cross-border violence has only grown, as the drug wars escalate. I don't raise the issue of border security as a criticism of our neighbors to the south, but to show our resolve and unity in the struggle, as they deal with a wave of violence unlike anything outside of the world's war zones.
Source: 2011 Texas State of the State Address , Feb 8, 2011

Medical marijuana OK for California, but not Texas

[On states' rights], there's a movement I disagree with, while appreciating the desire of Californians to decide for themselves--this is the issue of marijuana consumption. A few years ago Californians legalized the limited medicinal use of marijuana, but the Supreme Court struck this law down in Gonzalez v. Raich, claiming that the federal government has the power to regulate activity that would have a substantial effect on interstate commerce. Now, I am not sure the people of Texas would want to go down this road.

Keeping in mind that in 2008, less than 1% of the 847,000 marijuana-related arrests were carried out by federal law enforcement, it sure seems unlikely that there could be adequate resources at the federal level to actually tell California how to live their lives. In other words, Californians may well be telling the federal government to "bring it on," we'll handle this how we want to handle it.

Source: Fed Up!, by Gov. Rick Perry, p.164-165 , Nov 15, 2010

Drug trade causes soaring violence on southern border

President Obama is [doing] just enough to create the impression of some activity to address border security. He announced that he will send 1,200 National Guard troops to the border, as a temporary measure, until an additional 1,000 Border Patrol agents are on the job. This has generated headlines--and I suppose it is better than the alternative of no additional troops or officers--but it is really a drop in the bucket. Consider that of those 1,200 troops, only 286 were assigned to Texas. The southern border of the United States stretches 1,954 miles, and 1,255 of them are in Texas. We have 60 percent of the border, yet less than 25 percent of the resources were given to Texas to deal with it. In the face of the soaring violence infesting our border communities as a result of the drug trade, this paltry effort is simply inviting more problems.
Source: Fed Up!, by Gov. Rick Perry, p.124 , Nov 15, 2010

ACLU shouldn't protest random drug sweeps in public housing

The ACLU [protested] new community policies initiated by the law-abiding poor to protect their homes and families from youth gangs and drug traffickers. In 1997, the Chicago Public Housing Authority began conducting random sweeps in public housing projects in search of drugs and guns. The sweeps were initiated by members of the community fed up with crime and were beginning to have a deterrent impact. Then the ACLU showed up. They filed suit, saying the sweeps violated the Fourth Amendment concerning unreasonable search and seizure. The result of the suit was to turn the Housing Authority's policy into a joke because it was forced to provide advance notice to gang leaders and their supporters before conducting a sweep, and tenants could forbid them from entering. Meanwhile, the rapes, the beatings, and the shootings go on, thanks to the ACLU and its crusade for the "rights" of criminal thugs.
Source: On My Honor, by Gov. Rick Perry, p.129-130 , Feb 12, 2008

Protect the border from drug traffickers

The best plan to secure our border involves intensive operations with federal, state and local officials working together to seal off common illegal crossings.

We have caught drug traffickers and human smugglers off guard and reduced crime in remote border regions.

That is why I ask you to fund a $100 million effort that will expand patrols, purchase new technology and protect the border from drug traffickers, human smugglers and other criminal thugs that seek to destroy our way of life.

Source: Texas 2007 State of the State address , Feb 6, 2007

States should make drug policy, not feds.

Perry signed the Western Governors' Association resolution:

  1. Western Governors agree that states, not the federal government, are in the best position to understand the myriad of drug related issues facing their citizens and to initiate and implement drug policy strategies that will combat the substance abuse problems facing their communities.
  2. Western Governors support effective law enforcement initiatives and behavioral accountability. Partnerships between enforcement and treatment programs (or efforts) need to be strengthened and supported to enable behavioral changes.
  3. Western Governors recognize the escalating costs of incarceration and welcome effective common sense options within the criminal justice system that result in lessened drug abuse, healthier communities, and decreased criminal activity.
  4. Western Governors appreciate the unique problems confronting our communities from increased production, distribution and abuse of methamphetamines. The Governors will continue to attack this problem aggressively on several fronts, including enforcement of current criminal laws and expansion of treatment and intervention programs.
  5. Western Governors support sentencing laws that retain individual accountability for criminal conduct while administering proportional punishments that are fair and just.
  6. Western Governors support efforts to staunch the proliferation of illegal intravenous drug use. Common sense strategies aimed at protecting communities against discarded and potentially contaminated injection drug paraphernalia should be explored. Furthermore, the Governors encourage reform initiatives that will help and encourage injection drug users to obtain information, treatment, detoxification and social services.
Source: WGA Policy Resolution 01 - 05: Drug Policy Summit 01-WGA05 on Aug 14, 2001

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Page last updated: Feb 23, 2012