2020 presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., on Monday took a swipe at his Democratic rivals, including Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., for "bragging" about past marijuana use -- while ordinary Americans have seen their lives derailed for the same thing.
“We have presidential candidates, senators bragging about their pot use while there are kids who can’t get a job because they have a nonviolent offense for doing things that two of the last three presidents did,” Booker said on MSNBC.
That came after he made similar comments over the weekend in Iowa, even attacking fellow candidates who back legalizing the drug without talking about expunging the criminal records of those arrested for it.
“We have presidential candidates and congresspeople and senators that now talk about their marijuana use almost as if it’s funny,” he said, in comments first picked up by Marijuana Moment. “But meanwhile, in 2017, we had more arrests for marijuana possession in this country than all the violent crime arrests combined.”
“Do not talk to me about legalizing marijuana unless in the same breath you talk to me about expunging the records of millions of people that are suffering with not being able to find a job,” he said
While Booker did not name any candidates, his comments on "bragging" appeared to be aimed at least in part at Harris, who in a radio interview on “The Breakfast Club” last month said she listened to Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur while smoking pot in college.
“I have. And I inhaled. I did inhale,” Harris said, before adding: “I think it gives a lot of people joy. And we need more joy in the world.”
The subject came up when Harris, the daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants, was asked by the hosts about rumors she opposes marijuana legalization.
“That’s not true. Look, I joke about it, I have joked about it. Half my family is from Jamaica, are you kidding me?” she said, laughing.
Harris has backed the federal legalization of marijuana, and even backed Booker’s Marijuana Justice Act in May last year.
Both former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama admitted to pot use in their younger years -- with Clinton being widely mocked for saying he “didn’t like it and didn’t inhale.”
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who is running for president and backs pot legalization, said in an interview with “The Breakfast Club” this month that he had tried pot a couple of times, but it “didn’t do a whole lot for me.”
“My recollection is I nearly coughed my brains out, so it’s not my cup of tea,” he said.
Fox News' Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.