State of Arkansas Archives: on Drugs


Dan Whitfield: Let voters in each state determine how to treat marijuana

I believe Marijuana should be federally decriminalized. It should be up to the voters in each state whether they want this drug to be illegal, whether medicinally or recreational. The war on drugs has done nothing for Americans but create a way to mass incarcerate individuals and ruin lives. There is so much revenue gained from marijuana taxes that conservatives have come together with liberals to support legalization across more than half of the states.
Source: 2020 Arkansas Senate campaign website DanWhitCongress.us Jun 8, 2020

Tom Cotton: Stiffer penalties for deceptively trafficking in fentanyl

U.S. Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR), Kelly Loeffler (R-GA), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) introduced the Zero Tolerance for Deceptive Fentanyl Trafficking Act. The bill would increase penalties for fentanyl traffickers who intentionally misrepresent the drug to unknowing customers.

"Drug dealers who peddle fentanyl know just how deadly it is, but the worst of them lace other drugs with it and then sell their poison to unknowing customers. By tricking their victims into buying much more potent drugs than expected, these dealers often kill their customers. We shouldn't have any tolerance for such a fatal act of deception," said Cotton.

Under this legislation, dealers who intentionally misrepresent their product as a non-fentanyl substance would face a 20-year sentence. If the dealers intentionally included fentanyl to cause death--often because they want to increase the reputation of their product's potency--then the offense becomes death penalty eligible.

Source: Senate office press release on 2020 Arkansas Senate race Feb 27, 2020

Dan Whitfield: Marijuana should be federally decriminalized

Ending the War on Drugs: I believe Marijuana should be federally decriminalized. It should be up to the voters in each state whether they want this drug to be illegal, whether medicinally or recreational. Let the people vote for the laws they adhere to. The war on drugs has done nothing for Americans but create a way to mass incarcerate individuals and ruin lives. If you look at the success of states that have legalized marijuana you would understand why this is such an important issue.
Source: 2020 Arkansas Senate campaign website DanWhitCongress.us Nov 30, 2019

Mark West: Marijuana is not a gateway drug

Q: Do you support or oppose the statement, "Marijuana is a gateway drug"?

A: Oppose

Source: OnTheIssues interview of 2018 Arkansas governor candidate Apr 28, 2018

Conner Eldridge: Spent 5 years as US Attorney taking on drug traffickers

A 37-year-old prosecutor who has spent the past five years in the headlines for taking on drug traffickers, child pornographers and other criminals, Conner Eldridge on paper has the ideal background to mount a bid for the US Senate next year. But that resume is easily overshadowed by the political reality of just how dramatically Arkansas has moved from a Democratic stronghold in the South to a place where Republicans dominate up and down the ballot.

Eldridge's announcement last week that he is resigning as the U.S. attorney for western Arkansas was the strongest sign yet that he's inching toward a Democratic bid to unseat Republican US Sen. John Boozman. But he's not ready to even acknowledge that possibility. Eldridge has the fundraising ability and the profile to run as the type of centrist candidate that's won voter support in the past.

Source: Commercial Appeal on 2016 Arkansas Senate race Aug 15, 2015

Mike Beebe: Heavier penalties for drug trade; but not for possession

Our drug statutes must put a stronger emphasis and heavier penalties on those involved with the drug trade, instead of giving equally harsh sentences to those merely arrested for mere possession or use. Previous legislatures have built a grid of sentencing guidelines, a grid that is often manipulated or ignored to put away offenders for even longer stretches of time. Those guidelines must be more closely followed, or perhaps those jurisdictions that frequently exceed the grid should share in th cost of incarceration with our state. My proposed budget adds more than $4 million to help accommodate the Dept. of Community Correction's anticipated larger role.

The North Little Rock Police Chief said: "We're not talking about being tough on crime, or soft on crime; we're talking about being smart on crime." When it comes to criminal activity, we've got to make sure that the bad guys who will hurt you--the violent criminals or the career criminals--are the ones we lock away and save the beds for.

Source: 2011 Arkansas State of the State Address Jan 11, 2011

Bruce Westerman: No medical marijuana; no decriminalization

Q: Do you support allowing doctors to prescribe marijuana to their patients for medicinal purposes?

A: No.

Q: Do you support increasing Arkansas' tax on alcohol to expand substance abuse programs?

A: No.

Q: Should the possession of small amounts of marijuana be decriminalized?

A: No.

Source: Arkansas Congressional 2008 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2008

Mike Huckabee: Treatment for drug use instead of incarceration

We’ll ask for drug courts to be expanded because it makes more sense to treat people with a drug problem rather than simply incarcerating them and putting them in a place where their problems are not dealt with. That’s one of our initiatives.
Source: 2001 State of the State address to the Arkansas legislature Jan 9, 2001

  • The above quotations are from State of Arkansas Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Drugs.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2020 Presidential contenders on Drugs:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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Page last updated: Jan 27, 2021