2007 Republican Presidential Forum at Morgan State University, with Tavis Smiley: on Drugs


Mike Huckabee: More drug courts & rehab, instead of incarceration

We really donít have so much a crime problem in this country. We have a drug and alcohol problem. 80% of the people who are in our prisons and jails are there for a drug or alcohol crime. They either were high or drunk when they committed the crime, or they committed the crime to get high or drunk. And what has made a huge mistake is that weíve incarcerated so many of the people who really need drug rehab more than they need long-term incarceration.

In our state, we established over 20 drug courts, that gave people an alternative course, rather than just putting them in prison, giving them the opportunity to get what they really needed, which is off the addiction. Weíve got to quit locking up all the people that weíre mad at and lock up the people that weíre really afraid of, the people who are sexual predators and violent offenders. I would go for more drug courts and for a lot less incarceration of drug-addicted people.

Source: 2007 GOP Presidential Forum at Morgan State University Sep 27, 2007

Ron Paul: Repeal most federal drug laws; blacks are treated unfairly

Q: If you are elected president in 2008, what positive and significant legacy, if any, will you leave for Black Americans?

A: I would like to believe that if we had a freer society, it would take care of Blacks and whites and everybody equally because weíre all individuals. To me, that is so important. But if we had equal justice under the law, I think it would be a big improvement. If we had probably a repeal of most of the federal laws on drugs and the unfairness on how Blacks are treated with these drugs laws, it would be a tremendous improvement. And also, I think that if youíre going to have prosperity, it serves everybody. And if this is done by emphasizing property rights and freedom of the individuals, making sure that the powerful special interests donít control Washington, that the military industrial complex doesnít suck away all the wealth of the country, and then we would have prosperity.

Source: 2007 GOP Presidential Forum at Morgan State University Sep 27, 2007

Ron Paul: Inner-city minorities are punished unfairly in war on drugs

Q: What policy would you support to guarantee young Black and Latino men a fairer equal justice system?

A: A system designed to protect individual liberty will have no punishments for any group and no privileges. Today, I think inner-city folks and minorities are punished unfairly in the war on drugs. For instance, Blacks make up 14% of those who use drugs, yet 36 percent of those arrested are Blacks and it ends up that 63% of those who finally end up in prison are Blacks. This has to change. We donít have to have more courts and more prisons. We need to repeal the whole war on drugs. It isnít working. We have already spent over $400 billion since the early 1970s, and it is wasted money. Prohibition didnít work. Prohibition on drugs doesnít work. So we need to come to our senses. And, absolutely, itís a disease. We donít treat alcoholics like this. This is a disease, and we should orient ourselves to this. That is one way you could have equal justice under the law.

Source: 2007 GOP Presidential Forum at Morgan State University Sep 27, 2007

  • The above quotations are from "All-American Presidential Forum" at historically black Morgan State University in Baltimore, sponsored by PBS and moderated by Tom Joyner and Tavis Smiley, Sept. 27, 2007.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Drugs.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
  • Click here for more quotes by Alan Keyes on Drugs.
Candidates and political leaders on Drugs:
Incoming Obama Administration:
Pres.:Sen.Barack Obama
V.P.:Sen.Joe Biden
State:Hillary Clinton
Staff:Rahm Emanuel
Treas.:Tim Geithner
DoD:Robert Gates
A.G.:Eric Holder
DHS:Janet Napolitano
DoC:Bill Richardson
Outgoing Bush Administration:
Pres.:George Bush
V.P.:Dick Cheney
A.G.:John Ashcroft(2005)
DEA:Asa Hutchinson(2005)
USDA:Mike Johanns(2007)
EPA:Mike Leavitt
HUD:Mel Martinez(2003)
State:Colin Powell(2005)
State:Condoleezza Rice
HHS:Tommy Thompson(2005)
2008 Presidential contenders:
AIP: Frank McEnulty
Constitution: Chuck Baldwin
GOP: Sen.John McCain
GOP VP: Gov.Sarah Palin
Green: Rep.Cynthia McKinney
Independent: Ralph Nader
Liberation: Gloria La Riva
Libertarian: Rep.Bob Barr
NAIP: Amb.Alan Keyes
Socialist: Brian Moore
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