Longtime NH legislator cites late son's drug addiction in Booker endorsement

Longtime NH legislator cites late son's drug addiction in Booker endorsement
© Getty Images

New Hampshire state Rep. Peter Leishman (D), a 10-term incumbent, endorsed Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerBooker campaign rakes in million after Harris exits 2020 race Sunday talk shows: Lawmakers gear up ahead of Monday's House Judiciary hearing Democrats battle for Hollywood's cash MORE (D-N.J.) for president Tuesday, invoking his own late son’s drug addiction and citing Booker’s proposals to ease sentencing for nonviolent drug offenders, according to WMUR.

“My son, Jordan, suffered from addiction for 12 years. He got caught up in the system and then we lost him,” Leishman said.

ADVERTISEMENT

“What we're doing now is not working,” Leishman added. “I’m proud to support Cory for president because he thinks of people like my son when he gets up every morning to find solutions to the toughest challenges facing our country.”

Leishman cited the First Step Act, the bipartisan criminal justice reform bill which Booker had pushed to include sentencing reform provisions, including shorter mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent drug offenders. President TrumpDonald John TrumpPence: It's not a "foregone conclusion" that lawmakers impeach Trump FBI identifies Pensacola shooter as Saudi Royal Saudi Air Force second lieutenant Trump calls Warren 'Pocahontas,' knocks wealth tax MORE signed the measure into law last December.

Leishman is one of several legislators in the early primary state to have endorsed the New Jersey senator, including state Sens. Jon Morgan (D) and David Watters (D) and six fellow state House members, according to WMUR.

The Granite State is one of the states most affected by the opioid addiction crisis, ranking second in the nation behind West Virginia for opioid deaths in relation to its population in 2017, according to U.S. News & World Report.

Experts blame that on the amount of rural area in the state, as well as its rate of spending on substance abuse treatment and prevention, the second lowest in the nation.