In an interview published today, the deputy Prime Minister of the UK called for reform of drugs policy.
“It’s time we told the truth,” Nick Clegg’s told the Sun.
He went on:
“We are losing the war on drugs on an industrial scale.
“In politics, as in life, you can’t keep on doing something that doesn’t work. You can’t keep repeating the same mistakes.”
Mr Clegg explained: “If you were waging any other war where you have 2,000 fatalities a year, your enemies are making billions in profits, constantly throwing new weapons at you and targeting more young people — you’d have to say you are losing and it’s time to do something different.
“I’m anti-drugs — it’s for that reason I’m pro reform.”
Clegg’s comments came after Prime Minister David Cameron ignored the findings of a parliamentary inquiry that suggested the UK needed a royal commission to consider reforms — including the possibility of legalization. The Sun reports that the difference of opinion between the two had led to a “behind-the-scenes bust-up” with Cameron.
Cameron told a press conference in Brussels today that Clegg was “entirely entitled” to take the position.
Clegg is leader of the Liberal Democrats, long the third party in the UK’s two party system. After a brief period of “Cleggmania“, the party was swept into a coalition government with Cameron’s Conservative party in 2010. However, many believe the party has failed to make its mark and it has suffered in opinion polls ever since.