Saying he should have gone along with the state legislature last year and signed the bill decriminalizing personal possession of marijuana, West Dakota Governor Cody Stevens pardoned himself after he was arrested last night for possession of the illegal substance.
"I realize it was a mistake that I didn't sign the bill that both houses of our legislature passed," Stevens said as he signed an official Governor's pardon, which lets him go free and clear from his drug arrest. "I still believe pot is a gateway drug that ensnares our children and ruins families, but deep inside I also believe that some people can use it responsibly, and had I signed last year's "Responsible Possession of Marijuana Act," I wouldn't have gotten arrested and set a bad example for our kids."
Stevens said it was important that he exercise his authority as governor and pardon himself because he needs to be in office while the state battles a number of critical issues, including the lambasting of Obamacare, criminalizing homosexual behavior, and making sure illegal immigrants don't take any more American jobs, particularly in the state's thriving agriculture sector, because already thousands of illegals are working for almost nothing in wretched conditions, and that's just not fair to Americans who want those jobs.
"Most marijuana users are not good people," says Stevens. "They're people who dress sloppily, have a lot of sex, and rarely drive nice cars. Not all users, of course. No one would say I don't dress well or don't have a nice car. And I can assure you I don't get a lot of sex. For that reason, I sincerely believed last year that the marijuana bill was wrong for our state, and that's why I didn't sign it. However, I say to our state legislators, if they want to bring the bill up again, I will take a hard look at it, because I see now that our current blanket restriction on marijuana possession is hurting people who are responsible users of this lifestyle substance."
Stevens, a conservative Republican from Brownville who won election on a wave of Tea Party support in 2010, campaigned forcefully against legalized marijuana. He also sought to pare back the state's minimum wage law, add voter registration restrictions based on what he calls "civic responsibility" criteria, and require women who want to purchase birth control pills to have a vaginal examination.
He also campaigned to pare back the state's one-day pause period for people who buy more than two semi-automatic weapons in a day.
"I know my willingness to look at marijuana legislation again will hurt me with my Republican base, but I'm willing to take a stand and allow some people to have access to recreational marijuana use," he says. "I'm not saying every low-life in town should be allowed to get pot. I'm saying we can find a way to distinguish who can use pot responsibly and who can't. A responsible person who pays his taxes, doesn't take taxpayer's hard-earned dollars for things like welfare relief or food stamps, and doesn't engage in immoral same-sex relationships should be able to purchase and use a lifestyle-enhancer like personal marijuana without having to fear arrest. Would some welfare recipient be able to use marijuana to get her kicks while her children are stuck in front of the T.V. instead of reading books? No, of course not."
When asked if he thought it was hypocritical of him to pardon himself for breaking a law that he himself refused to change, Stevens said no. "How can it be hypocritical when I'm trying to stand up for family values?" he said. "We need to keep criminals and low-lifes away from a lifestyle substance like marijuana, and that's why I rejected last year's bill. Now I'm saying it's time to get government out of the freedom of people who can use marijuana responsibly. So, it's critical I be here, in office and working hard every day, to help advance this cause."