Republican U.S. Senate nominee Rand Paul said he doesn’t think the drug problem in Eastern Kentucky is “a real pressing issue,” even though others have described substance abuse in the region as an epidemic.
Paul’s latest comment, made in late July while speaking to an Associated Press reporter, expands on his previously stated position in favor of cutting federal funding for undercover drug investigations and drug treatment programs. Many officials say both are badly needed in Appalachia, a hotbed for marijuana growers and drug dealers selling prescription pills and methamphetamine.
His Democratic opponent, Jack Conway, favors using federal money, as does the region’s Republican congressman, U.S. Rep. Harold Rogers of Somerset.
“I don’t think it’s a real pressing issue,” Paul told The Associated Press, suggesting that Eastern Kentucky voters are more concerned about fiscal and social issues.
Perhaps a review of Meth use from the National Drug Intelligence Center, a report that shows Meth lab creation in Kentucky soared in 2009, or even how Kentucky law enforcement and local media completely disagree with Paul's claims.
We are, however, dealing with the person that claimed that "accidents happen" when the Deep Water Horizon rig exploded and sank in the Gulf Of Mexico. Perhaps he thinks there is a "free market" response and solution to meth use and its ultimate consequences.
As a former Meth user myself, I can attest to the horrors and loses that occur once the person completely loses the ability to remove themselves from use. I was a lucky one, as I was able to quit with reasonable ease and had the support of friends and family. So, for Paul to make the complete absurd claim that Meth use isn't such a big deal is to be even more divorced from reality than I had originally thought.
I have to ask again - is Kentucky really willing to have this man as an elected representative?