Kamala Harris acknowledges smoking weed in the past

Democratic White House hopeful Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisPoll shows Biden, Warren tied with Trump in Arizona Rising Warren faces uphill climb with black voters Inslee drops out of 2020 presidential race MORE (D-Calif.) on Monday acknowledged that she has smoked marijuana in the past.

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In a radio interview on New York City radio station WWPR's “The Breakfast Club,” Harris, who recently entered the 2020 presidential race, said she smoked a joint “a long time ago” and pushed back on accusations that she has opposed efforts to legalize marijuana. 

“I have,” she said when asked by host Charlamagne Tha God if she had ever smoked marijuana.

“And I did inhale,” she added, joking about former President Clinton’s famous line that he had smoked marijuana but “didn’t inhale.”

 

Harris went on to say that accusations she has tried to keep the drug from becoming legalized are not true.

“That’s not true,” she said.

“Half my family’s from Jamaica, are you kidding me?” she added, laughing.

Harris added that she supports legalization, a stance she expanded on in a new book published last month.

Last year, Harris backed fellow 2020 candidate Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerOvernight Defense: Two US service members killed in Afghanistan | Trump calls on other nations to take up fight against ISIS | Pentagon scraps billion-dollar missile defense program ABC unveils moderators for third Democratic debate Sanders targets gig economy as part of new labor plan MORE’s (D-N.J.) proposed bill to decriminalize the drug.

“I think that it gives a lot of people joy. We need more joy,” she said of marijuana in the interview Monday.

Harris faced criticism for laughing off a question about legalization of recreational marijuana in 2014 when she was running for reelection as California attorney general.

Nationwide support has grown for legal recreational pot, with 62 percent of respondents saying in an October poll that they support legalizing marijuana.

Currently, 10 states and Washington, D.C., have legalized recreational pot, and 33 have legalized medical marijuana. Oregon Sen. Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenWyden blasts FEC Republicans for blocking probe into NRA over possible Russia donations Wyden calls for end to political ad targeting on Facebook, Google Ex-CIA chief worries campaigns falling short on cybersecurity MORE (D) last week introduced a bill to legalize the substance at the federal level.