Cannabis News Stop the Drug War!
  Republicans Warn D.C. Mayor Not to Legalize Pot
Posted by CN Staff on February 25, 2015 at 05:59:39 PT
By Aaron C. Davis  
Source: Washington Post 

cannabis Washington, D.C. -- Two powerful House Republicans late Tuesday warned D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser not to move forward with legalizing marijuana in the nation’s capital and they warned of stiff federal retribution if the city’s chief executive did not yield.

The letter came on the same day that Bowser declared that a voter-approved measure to legalize pot would become law in the city at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday and the letter set the stage for a dramatic final 24 hours before that deadline.

“If you decide to move forward tomorrow with the legalization of marijuana in the District, you will be doing so in knowing and willful violation of the law,” read the letter signed by U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), chair of the appropriations subcommittee that handles the D.C. budget.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Chaffetz went further. He said that if Bowser and city officials are “under any illusion that this would be legal, they are wrong. And there are very severe consequences for violating this provision. You can go to prison for this. We’re not playing a little game here.”

A spokesman for Bowser did not immediately return an e-mail and phone call seeking comment late Tuesday. But earlier in the day, Bowser vowed to defend the will of seven in 10 voters who cast ballots in favor of following Colorado, Washington state in legalizing pot. Voters in Oregon and Alaska also passed measures to do so on the same day as those in D.C.

Unlike those states, however, D.C.’s own tax money remains subject to federal oversight and its often liberal social policies routinely become pawns in federal budget battles.

At issue for the city’s marijuana law is a restriction that House Republicans tucked in a $1 trillion spending package in December. That provision precluded D.C. from enacting any new laws to loosen penalties for marijuana. Chaffetz and other Republicans critical of marijuana legalization applauded the restriction at the time, saying it had effectively suspended the voter-backed measure.

But Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, the city’s nonvoting member of the House, and soon Bowser, the newly-elected mayor, said they viewed the restriction as not applying to the marijuana measure, known as Initiative 71, because it had already been passed by voters a month earlier.

Initiative 71 legalized possession of up to 2 ounces for D.C. residents and visitors over the age of 21. It also allowed for home cultivation of six plants, possession of marijuana paraphernalia and sharing of the drug. The congressional interference did halt the city from enacting any future rules to tax and sale marijuana as Colorado and Washington state have done.

The crux of the warning issued Tuesday by Chaffetz and Meadows, however, gets to even more obscure parts of the District’s tortured relationship with Congress.

All new local D.C. laws must pass a 30-day congressional review period. In the case of Initiative 71, that meant printing the measure and carrying it to Congress in January. Bowser, her police chief and other city officials have also worked behind the scenes in recent weeks to settle on rules for how marijuana legalization would take effect without legal sales.

Chaffetz and Meadows questioned in their letter if the city expenditures for those tasks amounted to violations of a powerful but rarely-invoked federal law known as the Anti Deficiency Act. That law prohibits government workers from misappropriating tax dollars in any way other than what Congress has specified. Violations of the law can be punishable by jail time.

“Even the mere act of transmitting the Initiative by the District is likely in violation of the Anti-deficiency Act,” the letter read. “Further, any other steps taken by the District on Initiative 71, such as developing rules for law enforcement or the general public regarding Initiative 71, are violations of the current Continuing Resolution and the Anti-deficiency Act.”

The letter warned that Chaffetz’s committee had begun an investigation into Bowser’s assertion that marijuana legalization would take effect on Thursday. The letter asked Bowser’s administration to produce all documents related to enactment of the marijuana measure, expenses incurred to do so and even lists of all D.C. employes “who participated in any way in any action related to enactment of Initiative 71.”

In a tweet posted early Wednesday morning, Adam Eidinger, head of the D.C. Cannabis Campaign who organized the petition drive to get Initiative 71 on the ballot said he hoped the city would dare move forward:

“I hope DC ignores this request as it’s a plainly offensive intimidation of our leaders.”

Aaron Davis covers D.C. government and politics for The Post and wants to hear your story about how D.C. works — or how it doesn’t.

Source: Washington Post (DC)
Author: Aaron C. Davis
Published: February 25, 2015
Copyright: 2015 Washington Post Company
Contact: letters@washpost.com
Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/
URL: http://drugsense.org/url/MThJLk9W

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Comment #17 posted by Hope on February 26, 2015 at 16:41:35 PT
Woody Harrelson
He is great. I loved the pure joy on his face.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #16 posted by FoM on February 26, 2015 at 09:21:25 PT
Hope
I love it too! It makes me smile! LOL!

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #15 posted by Hope on February 26, 2015 at 07:48:12 PT
Lol!
I absolutely love that, FoM.

I think I'll watch it again.

Thanks.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #14 posted by FoM on February 26, 2015 at 07:33:17 PT
Hope
Yes sweet teary!

A New Day: New York SNL Legal Marijuana Skit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5ei9nEWfyU

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #13 posted by Hope on February 26, 2015 at 06:27:20 PT
Sweet teary....
A good teary. Not the old teary where it's weeping because of some terrible injustice. These are now mostly tears of joy.

I did read where a man committed suicide in New York yesterday because a grow had been discovered at his place of business. That sucks. Bad.

They'll still kill a person, search their insides, bust into their homes, beat them, curse them, kill their animals, steal their children, steal and destroy their homes and property, bind their hands behind their backs and cage them and rob them for breaking cruel and unjust laws... but it's better than it was. Getting better in what seems like leaps and bounds now.

Someday the governments will end their unjust persecution on persons that appreciate one of the greatest horticultural gifts available to human kind... and other creatures, too. And when it's done... we will know that we didn't just stand by and say nothing in defense of our fellow humans. We were and are Righteous! Not self-righteous... like the prohibitionists/mad dogs are... just righteous.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #12 posted by FoM on February 26, 2015 at 04:45:28 PT
Hope and Had Enough and Everyone!
Yes a New Day is finally here! Makes me teary that finally we really are winning!

New World Coming: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mfQsngNoV7I

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #11 posted by Hope on February 25, 2015 at 22:04:53 PT
It's that new day!
D.C. Legalizes Marijuana Despite Threats From Congress

http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/local/Congress-Investigating-DCs-Move-to-Legalize-Pot-294016951.html

D.C. Bans Pot Testing of Job Applicants

http://www.nbcwashington.com/blogs/first-read-dmv/DC-Bans-Pot-Testing-of-Job-Applicants-284660911.html

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #10 posted by Hope on February 25, 2015 at 21:54:56 PT
Hugging on Had Enough, first.... Hey man!
Bowser: Legal pot possession to take effect at midnight in the District

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/house-republicans-warn-dc-mayor-not-to-legalize-pot/2015/02/25/2f784a10-bcb0-11e4-bdfa-b8e8f594e6ee_story.html?tid=pm_local_pop&tid=ptv_rellink

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #9 posted by Had Enough on February 25, 2015 at 15:23:02 PT
Still going on…

”In an interview with The Washington Post, Chaffetz went further. He said that if Bowser and city officials are “under any illusion that this would be legal, they are wrong. And there are very severe consequences for violating this provision. You can go to prison for this. We’re not playing a little game here.”

Hhaa…I remember the drug warriors saying/arguing that people didn’t go to jail for just having pot…

These guys at their will/whim interpret and twist the term “Law of the Land”…to THEIR LAW of our land…

I remember being told many decades ago that if I didn’t like the laws…then change them…and was told by the same that they don’t make the laws…just enforce them…

I gotta brillant idea…why don’t these people get the hell out of the way…

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #8 posted by The GCW on February 25, 2015 at 14:51:38 PT
So Good!
DC mayor: City to legalize pot despite threat from Congress

http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_27596050/2-gop-congressmen-warn-dc-mayor-not-legalize

WASHINGTON (AP) — Possession of marijuana will become legal in the nation's capital, Mayor Muriel Bowser reiterated Wednesday, defying a threat from Congress that she and other city leaders could face prison time for implementing a voter-approved initiative.

Bowser, a Democrat, said the city's plans haven't changed despite a letter from two leading House Republicans warning of repercussions if the city moves forward with legalization, which was set to take effect at 12:01 a.m. Thursday." cont.

-0-

I can hardly wait! This is going to be so good! The RE-pub's can't win.

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #7 posted by schmeff on February 25, 2015 at 14:20:33 PT
How Do You Spell Nazi in America?
GOP (aka Greedy One Percent). Now that those sorry excuses for human beings have officially come out against Democracy, what more needs be said? My advice? Grab the nearest Rethuglican and slap 'em silly. It's the American way.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #6 posted by The GCW on February 25, 2015 at 14:05:35 PT
I don't care for these ignorant republicans.
Let's see what happens if and when these IGNOID Repub's cage Bowser. I believe there will be hell to pay and Repub's will be the ones with regret.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #5 posted by Hope on February 25, 2015 at 10:30:49 PT
Thank you, Kenyan McDuffie!
House Republican calls on Holder to halt D.C. marijuana legalization

“Let me be clear: we are not playing any games in the District of Columbia either,” said Council member Kenyan McDuffie (D-Ward 5). “It is appalling that members of Congress, particularly those who purport to champion individual and state’s rights, continue to meddle in our local affairs when it is politically convenient.”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/house-republicans-warn-dc-mayor-not-to-legalize-pot/2015/02/25/2f784a10-bcb0-11e4-bdfa-b8e8f594e6ee_story.html

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #4 posted by Vincent on February 25, 2015 at 10:09:43 PT:

backbone
Well, the time has come...will the Democrats in Washington act like real leaders, as they say they are...or will they act like jellyfish, as I believe they are? When it comes to this issue, the Democrats have consistently behaved as jellyfish, without the backbone to stand up to these Republican ANIMALS, and I am sick of it!

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #3 posted by runruff on February 25, 2015 at 08:48:43 PT
Congress takes pot shot at DC !
In the on going mello-drama of law making, Snidley Wiplash , has declared he will not allow democracy to happen in or around the " Land of the Free", sighting that, "people don't know what is good for them"!

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #2 posted by runruff on February 25, 2015 at 07:47:00 PT
It's a battle of wits.
The Wits v. The Witless.

The ultimate outcome is a forgone conclusion in ♤ !



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #1 posted by runruff on February 25, 2015 at 07:38:31 PT
High noon...
...at the OK Corral!



[ Post Comment ]


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