Ads in support of marijuana legalization in Colorado target Bush, Cheney

Saturday, November 4th 2006, 8:21 pm
By: News On 6

DENVER (AP) A group that claims marijuana use is safer than drinking ran newspaper ads Saturday mentioning allegations that President Bush once drunkenly challenged his father to fight and Vice President Dick Cheney's accidental shooting of a friend after drinking.

SAFER Colorado, which put a measure on the Colorado ballot to legalize possession of marijuana, placed an ad in a newspaper in Greeley, where Bush made an appearance on Saturday.

The ad in the Greeley Tribune had a photo of Bush accompanied by text that read: ``In 1972, this man tried to fight his dad when he was drunk. Just one more reason to vote 'Yes on 44.''' The ad was referring to published reports that in 1972, a 26 year-old Bush had come home drunk and challenged his father to a fight. The matter was reportedly settled without violence.

The group ran the Cheney ad in The Gazette of Colorado Springs, a day after he spoke to troops at the nearby Fort Carson Army post and attended a campaign rally. The ad said, ``Shot his friend in the face after drinking. Just one more reason to vote 'Yes on 44.'''

Cheney accidentally shot and wounded a friend while hunting in Texas in February. The vice president said he had one beer several hours before the shooting.

``They were both in town ... and we are simply taking this opportunity to draw attention to the fact that alcohol contributes to far more problems than marijuana,'' said Mason Tvert, the group's campaign director.

White House spokesman Tony Snow, asked for comment aboard Air Force One as Bush headed to Texas after the rally, dismissed the ads as ``kind of snarky and juvenile.''

``I'm not sure they did their cause much good,'' he said.

Referendum 44, which is on Tuesday's ballot, would allow adults to carry up to an ounce of marijuana, similar to an ordinance Denver voters approved last year. No other state allows pot possession for anything other than medical use. Federal law also prohibits possession.

A recent poll of 625 registered voters by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research found 34 percent of voters supported the measure, while 57 percent opposed it. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.