Marijuana and the minister

Finance Minister Lapid’s old acquaintances come forward after he denies smoking illegal drug.

Lapid looking sullen 370 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Lapid looking sullen 370
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Finance Minister Yair Lapid used to smoke marijuana, and is lying when he denies it in interviews, according to testimony from former associates that came forward this weekend. The testimonial came soon after Lapid denied having tried the illegal drug in an interview released Friday.
“It wouldn’t harm me politically if I said I smoked grass, but I didn’t. I decided at a young age that I’m against it,” Lapid told a Yediot Aharonot reporter. “For many years I drank alcohol – I was married twice. I smoked cigarettes and cigars, which is a much bigger image problem than smoking grass in Israel. And now what? I need to pretend that I smoked so that someone will think I’m nice? It’s idiotic.”
Lapid added that in his high school yearbook it said that he refused to smoke it and threatened to call the police if his classmates did.
On Saturday night, actor Tomer Sharon and Sophia Trotoush Argaman wrote about their experiences smoking cannabis with the finance minister.
They both called for its legalization.
“I’m very angry, and now, unfortunately, I have to speak openly. [Lapid’s] insistence that [he didn’t smoke marijuana] is incomprehensible and raises concerns about the way you make decisions. You are sticking to your lie! Are all the people who smoked with you peons?” Trotoush Argaman wrote on Facebook.
She recounted smoking a joint with Lapid in his house together with a mutual friend in the early ’90s, and said it was clear that it was not his first time smoking, because he called it “good stuff” and gave her and her friend a joint.
Trotoush Argaman said she did not know Lapid personally, but she remembered smoking with him that one time because he was already somewhat famous at that point.
“I think it’s my responsibility as a citizen to reveal that a politician in such a senior position is lying to us,” she concluded.
Sharon took to Facebook, wondering why Lapid feels so threatened by marijuana.
According to Sharon, Lapid wrote a play for the Nahal Brigade Band together with the band’s members, and smoked with them. When Lapid smoked, he was nice and funny and respected the band members, but when he didn’t, Sharon wrote, he was rude to them, jealous of their talent, and threatened to beat them up.
“I liked his smoked-up version. I feared his other side,” Sharon wrote.
“The other side is the one that ran in the last election! The Yair who compares angry people to schnauzers, who ensures his place [as Yesh Atid leader] until 2020 [without a primary], who punishes MKs who dare to think differently, who says poor people are responsible for their poverty, who rejects any blame.”
Lapid’s office declined comment on the allegations. Lapid was named Person of the Year by The Jerusalem Post’s sister publication, Sof Hashavua, on Friday.