Election 2018

Q&A with Phil Weiser, candidate for state attorney general

Candidate Q&A

Posted

Party: Democratic

City of residence: Denver

Profession: Professor of law, and dean emeritus, University of Colorado Law School

Campaign website: philforcolorado.com

What makes you the best choice for this office?

I have dedicated my life to law, justice and public service — with experience at the state and federal levels, leading teams of lawyers, building innovative programs and fighting for constitutional protections for all. As a former law clerk to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, leader at the Justice Department, adviser at Barack Obama's White House and dean of CU Law, I have the best experience to lead this office of over 500 people dedicated to protecting Coloradans.

What are the most important duties of the attorney general?

The attorney general is the lawyer for the state of Colorado and its people. Led by an innovative and committed AG, the office defends our constitutional freedoms, stands up for workers and consumers, and protects our land, air, and water. As AG, I will fight for equal treatment and opportunity under the law.

What policy changes would you implement?

The AG is well positioned to lead on a number of important policy areas, like addressing the opioid epidemic by treating it as a public health crisis and managing our water when there is less of it — and more demands for it — on account of climate change. I will also work to advance fair and sensible reforms to our criminal justice system, with incarceration alternatives for those who are not a threat to public safety.

Would you defend Colorado's marijuana-legalization law against federal challenges?

Yes. As attorney general, I will protect our state's sovereignty against federal overreach and ensure that Colorado maintains the right to decide how we legislate and manage marijuana. I will work with law enforcement officers across the state to ensure that the expected benefits of legalized marijuana are experienced to the fullest extent, and I will defend the rights of counties to decide how they manage marijuana within their jurisdiction.

If elected, what will your top priority be in January?

Fair treatment and opportunity for all Coloradans is the heart of my vision. To achieve this, it is imperative to address the opioid epidemic and take on irresponsible drug companies who lied to people, made huge profits and now must be held accountable. Once we win this case, we will use the funds from this settlement to spur the development of drug treatment across Colorado, providing an important alternative to putting drug users in jail.

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