Updated: Jan 18, 2013 4:50 PM
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) — New Mexico Congressman Steve Pearce is under fire for some comments he made at the Legislature on Thursday.
"If we require people who work to take drug screens, we should require people who don't work to take drug screens," he said. "If they are going to get public assistance then let's require that."
In his address to the Legislature, Pearce, a Republican representing New Mexico's First Congressional District, said would love to see state or federal legislation require the drug screens.
The Democratic Party quickly fired back along with the New Mexico Drug Policy Alliance, which says it's a terrible idea.
They also pointed out that it's been found to be unconstitutional in Florida.
Pearce said dependency is part of the unemployment problem in America.
"We're finding that there are people who refuse to work," he told KRQE News 13. "They can't qualify, number one, if on drugs can't pass a drug screen.
"Then another group people, employers telling us everyday, I hired them but they then said no. They are afraid to give up their government check."
Pearce also believes there should be incentives for businesses to hire older, less able people looking for work.
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