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US Rep: Opponents Who Meddle With DC Marijuana Legalization Will Get Fight Of Their Lives

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marijuana daylin leach senate bill 528 dcWASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) today reassured District of Columbia residents that she will defend the District’s marijuana legalization initiative (Initiative 71), expected to be overwhelmingly approved tonight, from any and all congressional attempts to block or overturn  it.  However, Norton warned residents that Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD) is still looking for ways to undo the will of D.C. residents.  Harris told The Hill last week, “If legalization passes, I will consider using all resources available to a member of Congress to stop this action…”  Norton said that Harris’ interference with a marijuana legalization initiative stimulated by racial injustice is particularly objectionable.  An American Civil Liberties Union of the Nation’s Capital study of the District, where about half the residents are Black, found that Blacks are eight times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than non-Blacks, and 91 percent of all marijuana-related arrests are of Black residents, even though  Blacks and Whites use marijuana at the same rate.  She said that no Member of Congress has the right to intervene with the city’s right to self-government and its attempt to erase almost unheard-of racial disparities.

“The people have spoken,” Norton said.  “And D.C. residents can rest assured that when a mandate comes directly from the people, they haven’t seen a fight like the fight I’m preparing to make against Rep. Andy Harris and any other Member of Congress who attempts to undo our democratic process.  Initiative 71 is not just about the legalization of marijuana; it addresses an intolerable racial disparity in our city that has crippled the life chances of countless African Americans and Hispanics.  We have not been able to conquer the racial disparity between Black and White marijuana convictions.  What we can do with legalization is to take away the instrument that causes this inequality.”

Just today, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) told Roll Call that D.C. voters  alone, not Congress, should decide whether to legalize marijuana.  Paul said, “I’m not for having the federal government get involved.  I really haven’t taken a stand on…the actual legalization…but I’m against the federal government telling them they can’t.”  Norton said that Senator Paul’s statement was particularly noteworthy because it was unrelated to the underlying marijuana legalization issue, and was based entirely on the democratic principle of local self-government free from federal interference.

In July, the District’s marijuana decriminalization bill took effect.  That same month, the House passed the fiscal year 2015 D.C. Appropriations bill, which, under an amendment sponsored by Harris, would prohibit the District from spending its local funds to decriminalize or legalize marijuana.  Norton kept the amendment from being included in the Senate’s fiscal year 2015 D.C. Appropriations bill or in the fiscal year 2015 short-term continuing resolution, which expires on December 11.  Since passage of the Harris amendment, Norton has been working with her allies in the Senate and outside Congress to keep the Harris amendment out of the final fiscal year 2015 D.C. Appropriations bill.  The Obama Administration has called on Congress to reject the Harris amendment.  The Statement of Administration Policy on the House’s fiscal year 2015 D.C. Appropriations bill said the administration “strongly opposes” the bill’s prohibition on the District spending its own local funds to implement its local marijuana policies because it violates the “principle of States’ rights and of District home rule.”

Twenty-three states have legalized medical marijuana, 18 states have decriminalized marijuana, and two states have legalized marijuana.  A February 2014 Pew Research Center poll found that 54% of Americans support marijuana legalization.

Source: Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton

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37 Comments

  1. Look what I found, (thanks Scott for the link)

    Under Health Professionals / Adelson Drug Clinic Donations / Rep. Andy Harris ,, Campaign Finance ,,,

    $1,226,310 ,, Received 2013-2014 ,, more if you look at the other years

    Campaign Finance ,, $47,411,700
    Given (all years) To Harris and others

    Along with many “D’s” and “R’s and dog catchers ,, anyone he can buy.

    Adelson Drug Clinic

    Information
    The Adelson Clinic is a private, non-profit organization founded by Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson and
    dedicated to treating the disease of opiate (heroin and painkillers) addiction by providing methadone (maintenance) treatment
    and counseling services. The clinic staff is treating individuals with compassion and extends a helping hand in a safe and dignified environment. Founded in February 2000, the clinic is certified for adults and teenagers, and is the
    only local clinic to use methadone to treat teen dependency on painkillers such as Oxygenating and Lortab, or heroin or marijuana.

    FYI / BIO ,,,, Sheldon Gary Adelson (pronounced /ˈædəlsən/;
    born August 4, 1933) is an American business magnate, investor, and philanthropist. He
    is the chairman and chief executive officer of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, the parent company of
    Venetian Macao Limited which operates The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino
    and the Sands Expo and Convention Center.
    He also owns the Israeli daily newspaper Israel HaYom. Adelson,
    a lifelong donor and philanthropist to a variety of causes, founded with his
    wife’s initiative the Adelson Foundation.

    As of July 2014, Adelson was listed by
    Forbes as having a fortune of $36.4 billion, and as the 10th richest person in
    the world.[3]

    Adelson is also a major contributor to Republican
    Party candidates, which has resulted in his gaining significant
    influence within the party.[4][5]

    There is a Link to his Israeli daily newspaper with some interesting info (need to use a translator program to read)
    .
    On a personal note; ,,,, If he even tries to open a casino here in Florida ,, Or even buy into the Indian casino network
    many will go to jail over his blatant erroneous influence in the MM.J amendment. Even those against the amendment see it as a buy in.
    It’s noted by the amount of land, old hotels. beach access, etc suddenly being purchased in the Dayton and Miami areas.
    I will never step foot in a Sands related casino or any of his related endeavors ever again.
    That also goes for the Crotch Brothers also.I am a equal opportunity dissident.

  2. …thanks for this great web-site, Scott! It sure helps follow the money trail to see who these folks really serve. So Andy is an anesthesiologist. Sounds like he’s hell-bent on only supporting drugs that’ll make him & his peeps money by ensuring that the playing field is slanted in their favor, meaning, no cannabis allowed…

  3. Among the more prominent military powers who contribute soldiers to the UN “Peace-keeping forces” is Pakistan. Pakistan has justly been described as an Army with a Country, a military establishment which we subsidize lavishly for rather Byzantine political reasons. Sorry, but transporting Pakistani soldiers 11,000 miles to wage a war on weed AND us footing the bill for such an excursion doesn’t pass the ‘Giggle test”.

  4. Who said there had been? Can you be more specific? There are states with prohibition, just as there is a federal prohibition, and neither should exist. It should be decided for ALL Americans, not just those who are lucky enough to live in a state that doesn’t prohibit. We have rights as Americans that states should not be able to violate.

  5. Well, the Supreme Court stepped in in Loving v. Virginia, as they should have. No state has the right to tell people who can and can’t get married. So, thank goodness the government got involved (meaning, a court case made it all the way up so those wise 9 folks could stop discrimination). You know, they way it SHOULD get involved in gay marriage.

  6. “feds who’ve been telling us for several years they were going to reclassify it and allow nationwide legalization for the states that wanted it.”

    Who said that? You have names, dates, sources?

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