On January 25th, 2012, a survey was released on EndProhibition.ca (a pro-NDP anti-prohibition website) where Thomas Mulcair’s campaign stated that he was in favour of decriminalizing cannabis and was very much in favour of medical marijuana. On March 18th, 2012 Mulcair was doing a t.v. interview with Tom Clark (see the video above) and he declared that he was opposed to decriminalization and that cannabis needed more study.
This may come as a shock to Canadians and those who voted NDP in the last election but it didn’t surprise me at all. The NDP, under Jack Layton and now Thomas Mulcair, has always masqueraded as Canada’s progressive political party but when it comes to the war on drugs they have always refused to take a bold stance in favour of drug legalization (as the Liberal Party did at the beginning of the year during our biennial convention.)
Jack Layton favoured decriminalization* (when he was forced to give his views) but he never really emphatically campaigned on the issue. With overly-harsh sentences and a dumb-on-crime agenda being one of the major pillars of Stephen Harper’s agenda, the opposition can’t afford to be tepid in our response to the PM’s evidence-free policies. Mulcair is taking a position that will let Stephen Harper muddy the waters and undercut the progressive approach to crime that the opposition parties should be putting forward during the next election. I hope that Mulcair is shamed into changing his position (once again) when he realizes that he is to the right of the Liberal Party on this issue.