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The Journal Gazette

  • Lucas

Tuesday, September 04, 2018 1:00 am

Furthermore ...

Lawmaker's mind-altering change of heart

State Rep. Jim Lucas is known around Indiana as the General Assembly's biggest gun-rights supporter.

After a “learning” tour of Colorado, the Seymour Republican probably deserves to be known as its biggest marijuana booster.

Lucas told Indianapolis news outlets last month he spent five days touring medical and recreational marijuana dispensaries in Denver, Colorado Springs and Pueblo to learn as much as he could about the industry. 

“I got as impaired as I could possibly get impaired while I was out there, you know, just as an experiment for the sake of science,” Lucas told WIBC radio. “And that was one of the sacrifices I was willing to make. Before I went to sleep, I wondered how I was going to feel the next day, but I woke up before my alarm in a good mood and I felt great and I thought 'Wow, this is incredible.' ”

Lucas didn't hesitate to admit he had participated in activity that would be illegal in Indiana.

“Sure, I enjoyed the freedom Colorado offers to responsible adults and it was amazing,” he told WTHR-TV. “Cookies, edibles, smokes, vape sticks.”

Lucas said the “biggest takeaway” from his trip was “how normal everybody acted around cannabis.”

“We freak out about it over here in our neck of the woods,” he told WIBC. “It's how it's treated, how it's handled. Recreationally, medically – it's no big deal.”

But Colorado Times Recorder, an online publication, wryly noted Lucas hasn't always felt that way about drug use – he co-sponsored legislation that would have required drug-testing of public assistance recipients.