A mayor in Indiana knows what’s good. Pete Buttigieg recently opened up in an interview about possibly decriminalizing all drugs if elected president. He currently is the Mayor of South Bend, Indiana but is running to be the democratic candidate for the 2020 election.
During an interview in Iowa, he spoke about alternative programs to address the ‘health problem‘ the criminal justice system has worsened. This policy could be a great way to sway younger voters to his side. Decriminalizing all drugs is an ambitious task, but decriminalizing the more recreational ones could be achievable. Buttigieg told this to Des Moines Register Monday:
“I would not have said even five years ago what I believe now, which is that incarceration should not even be a response to drug possession…So I’ve always been skeptical of mass incarceration, but now I believe more than ever we need to take really significant steps like ending incarceration as a response to simple possession”
When asked if this drug policy would be “across the board” and include all drugs he replied, “That’s right.” Buttigieg would go on to share his concerns about overpopulated prisons and statistics that suggest loved ones of those incarcerated are more likely to end up behind bars.
With the United States having the highest incarceration rate in the world, this type of policy could be appealing to voters. His goal in office would be to reduce the incarceration rate by 50%. If he were to achieve this, it would drop the U.S. from the #1 incarceration rate to #28.
It will be interesting to see if Buttigieg can convince the rest of the U.S. government to decriminalize drugs. We do know that recreational drugs are now creating more medical benefits than ever before.