The Wisconsin congressman told KRDO-TV, in Colorado Springs, that he personally doesn't approve of medical marijuana laws. But he says that states should have the right to choose whether to legalize the drug for medical purposes.
The conservative rising star, who indicted President Obama and the Democrats for both the country's economic direction and the administration record on jobs, made the statement in response to a reporter who asked him about his position in the matter. "It's up to Coloradans to decide," he said. The interview, which aired on Friday, was taped while Ryan campaigned in the critical battleground state last week. Colorado is one of 17 states, plus the District of Columbia, that allow medical marijuana.
Ryan was perhaps trying to draw a distinction between the GOP Romney/Ryan ticket and the Obama administration that Republicans charge with trying to overstep the authority of the federal government. The Obama administration at first signaled that it wouldn't interfere with state-sanctioned marijuana distribution. But the Justice Department has since shut down dispensaries in both California and Colorado.
Ryan, who kept a low profile after the Republican and Democratic conventions, is fresh off a couple of California fundraisers were he sought to woo wealthy Bay Area Republican donors, just before visiting the Google headquarters for a Google+ "hangout" with campaign volunteers. The GOP vice presidential nominee will also soon start the preparations for the October 11 vice presidential debate at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky, where the "young gun" will face Vice President Joe Biden.