Differing Republican views

By: - May 16, 2023 2:39 pm

House Republicans are offering competing perspectives on the policy. 

Rep. Andrew Barkis, R-Olympia, said the bill will take the beginning steps to help people recover from drug use problems. 

“We are investing in significant resources, significant dollars into recovery,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Rep. Jim Walsh, R-Aberdeen, said the Legislature should have simply addressed the Supreme Court’s decision by adding the word “knowingly” back into the statute and keeping drug possession a felony. 

Instead, the Legislature took the Blake decision as an opportunity to open up many more questions surrounding drug policy, Walsh said. 

“The proper response would be to restore our drug laws to where they were pre-Blake,” he added.

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Laurel Demkovich
Laurel Demkovich

Laurel joined States Newsroom in 2023 after almost three years as a statehouse reporter for the Spokesman-Review. She covers state government, the Legislature and all other Olympia news.