Earlier this week, Governor Chris Christie proposed a saner drug policy for New Jersey:

From the transcript:

[L]et us reclaim the lives of those drug offenders who have not committed a violent crime. By investing time and money in drug treatment – in an in-house, secure facility – rather than putting them in prison. Experience has shown that treating non-violent drug offenders is two-thirds less expensive than housing them in prison. And more importantly – as long as they have not violently victimized society – everyone deserves a second chance, because no life is disposable. I am not satisfied to have this as merely a pilot project; I am calling for a transformation of the way we deal with drug abuse and incarceration in every corner of New Jersey.

Reihan applauds:

Christie evidently doesn’t believe that taking this stand will limit his political future. He is demonstrating that his brand of conservatism can form the foundation of a coalition that captures centrist voters even in a heavily urban, diverse northeastern state. This is part of why I understand and accept why Christie chose not to run for president this cycle: he had much more to do in New Jersey, and building a solid foundation there could be a great help if he does indeed pursue a national career.