Michael Bloomberg is doubling down on his opposition to marijuana legalization as he inches closer to deciding whether to run for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.
In a speech at the U.S. Naval Academy on Tuesday, the former New York City mayor talked about drug overdose deaths in recent years—a consequence of the nation’s opioid crisis—and then made an abrupt pivot to cannabis reform.
“We have a different kind of problem in America, for example,” he said. “Last year, in 2017, 72,000 Americans OD’d on drugs. In 2018, more people than that are OD-ing on drugs.”
“And today incidentally, we are trying to legalize another addictive narcotic,” he said, referencing marijuana, “which is perhaps the stupidest thing anybody has ever done. We’ve got to fight that, and that’s another thing that Bloomberg Philanthropies will work on it in public health.”