On the ballot for governor, Rhode Island voters have five choices. One of the five candidates who are on that November ballot is Elijah Gizzarelli, a veteran and millennial who is running as the Libertarian party’s candidate.
“Because I’m not happy with the other options, frankly,” Gizzarelli said on a recent episode of Ray-ality TV when asked why he wants to be governor. “If you look around the state, Rhode Island hasn’t been run well for a long time. And there’s just so many common-sense issues that we can just fix right off the bat and nobody is doing it, nobody is talking about it.”
A number of voters may not know what the Libertarian philosophy is since the United States is predominantly a two-party system.
“If you think that people should be allowed to live their lives any way they so choose, as long as they're not harming other people, you’re a Libertarian,” Gizzarelli described when explaining what it means to be a Libertarian.
Two of Gizzarelli’s main policies he’d hope to implement if elected are ending the Drug War and bringing back flavored vapes.
“The Drug War is [an] economic disaster and a humanitarian crisis – and it needs to end right now,” Gizzarelli said. “First day in office, when elected, I will release all non-violent drug offenders from the ACI, and send them home with a heartfelt apology [because] it’s horrific what’s happening right now.”
He explained his reasoning for wanting to bring back flavored vapes boils down to his belief in bodily autonomy. There is also an economic reason for Gizzarelli’s plan of bringing back flavored vapes.
“Rhode Islanders who vape, they’re driving to Connecticut,” he added. “They’re spending their Rhode Island dollars in Connecticut not only to buy vapes, and it’s bolstering Connecticut businesses. But now they’re driving past casinos to go get their flavored vapes, so now they’re spending money at the casino there. It’s taking money out of Rhode Island, and if you’re an environmentalist, do you really want so many people driving 25, 50 miles to go pick up what they should be able to get just down the street at their local store – it’s just ridiculous.”
His plan to shift Rhode Island’s economy in the right direction focuses on assisting small businesses and reducing red tape. As for taxes, Gizzarelli favors lowering the sales and gas taxes, saying, “I would try to lower taxes as much as humanly possible anywhere I can.”
Education was a hotly-debated topic at Thursday’s debate for governor. Educational reforms Gizzarelli supports include, effectively managing the school budgets, school choice and free, high-quality school lunches.
The full interview with Gizzarelli about his candidacy for governor can be seen here.