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Budget Bill Seeks To Block DC Marijuana Legalization, But…

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washington dc marijuana legalizationBy Phillip Smith

The leaders of the House and Senate appropriations committees agreed on a budget bill Tuesday night that includes language seeking to block the District of Columbia from implementing the Measure 71 legalization initiative overwhelmingly approved by District voters. But there may be some wiggle room.

A bill summary provided by the House Appropriations Committee says the bill, which will be considered by the House and Senate later this week, “prohibits both federal and local funds from being used to implement a referendum legalizing recreational marijuana use in the District.”

The bill summary doesn’t mention decriminalization, which was approved earlier this year by the DC city council and has already gone into effect.

Rumors had swirled throughout that day about what was being hammered out, with hopes raised at various points that some less onerous deal might be reached, perhaps one that would bar the DC city council from passing and implementing marijuana taxation and regulation. Such a DC bill is already in the works.

While reform advocates were disappointed with outcome, some are suggesting that the bill’s language can be parsed in such a way to render the congressional ban moot. That remains to be seen.

This is not the first time Congress has acted to block the will of District voters on marijuana reform issues. In 1998, DC voters approved medical marijuana with 69% of the vote, but Congress blocked it for more than a decade. Now, DC voters, who approved legalization with 70% of the vote, are once again being given the back of the hand by the folks on Capitol Hill.

The omnibus budget bill is almost certain to pass Congress this week and be signed into law by President Obama. Then the legal battle to recognize the will of the people in Washington, DC, will commence.

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90 Comments

  1. Run fer the hilz the pergrissives is a comin…keep yer powder dry.
    Hehe sorry I couldn’t help it.

  2. I agree the whole thing is rotten to the core but the democrats are definitely the lesser of two evils. Obviously sad to have to say it that way but ” better than a kick in the head”, my grampa would say…hehe

  3. No, you are wrong. I am not making any assumptions at all about you. I am referring to a sociological phenomenon that has degraded political discussion in America in the interest of the 1% through a seizure of the media by certifiable sociopathological morons like Bill O’Reilly. You are manifesting the problem that is prominent in many of these discussions, which is the way they become overly personalized when they do not have to be and shouldn’t be.

    As for the rest of your commentary, I think it speaks for itself and does bring the discussion down to the somewhat personal level.

    As for your pornographic comments, for example, you might be happier if you got your imagination out of other people’s bedrooms. Certainly such comments are inappropriate in public discussion. Good luck. I will not be responding further in this discussion.

  4. Yes! to term limits because every time they are voted back in they gain more seniority and, hence, more power.

  5. Here’s a simple fix for ya. Everyone goes into work Monday morning and changes their W-4 withholding to 2,3,4…whatever it takes to have NO FEDERAL TAX WITHELD on their paycheck. This would shut down the govt. overnight and surely get their attention. Of course you will owe taxes at the end of the year, but you wouldn’t be giving the govt. an INTEREST-FREE LOAN every f–cking week! When’s the last time you got an interest-free loan? Ha! And if you’re worried about your ability to come up with the money to pay your tax bill at the end of the year, put the money you would have “given” the govt every week in an interest-bearing account and turn the tables on who makes money off YOUR money all year. We actually DO hold the purse strings. We just have to WAKE UP and realize our power. There are MILLIONS more of us than them and they know it. Why don’t we?

  6. You do realize that part of any Presidents job, regardless of political party is fund-raising, right? A President is the head of his/her political party during their term in office.

  7. You loosened every arrow in your quiver but never answered the man’s question: Do you LIKE money in politic’s ? That was it, unless I missed something further back.

  8. It’s used in debate, as part of a rebuttal, occasionally in public speaking. It’s not a pejorative, it means crafty.

  9. Of course, you could always refuse to pay some or all of the taxes you hate so much.

    “Following” the constitution is a debatable and moving target, and has been since it was written. Do you really believe the founding fathers thought nothing would ever change, and every single word of their document would be considered gospel, centuries later? They did not, and we’ve changed it many times.

    As far as leaving people alone, that’s fine, unless whatever they’re doing has an impact on someone else, which, in the 21st century, is pretty much everything you do, unless you live in a cave.

    I wish there was a simple fix, but there is not.

  10. Procedural votes mean dick. It’s the vote for passage that actually counts and that is where your Democrat brethren sold you out. Of course they claim they are unhappy to vote for it but there is a lot of shit that got passed that helps them out like the amnesty bullshit and the Obamacare crap. Elections have consequences…your own President said that. And if you think this is bad, wait until January when the Republicans will shove the same shit Harry Reid did to them right back up the Democrats ass.

  11. You are making the assumption that I allow any media outlet whether it be Fox, CNN, or MSNBC to tell me what to think which couldn’t be further from the truth. Unlike the millions of Americans, I choose to think for myself. I am not a Democrat nor a Republican. I conduct my own research on issues and form my own opinion.

    Both parties have morons that act as a mouthpiece. No one party has a monopoly on such. Joe Biden is as good as an equal to the moronic shit that has come from Palin’s mouth.

    The problem I have with Progressives is they want their cake and eat it too. Under the disguise of social issues, they constantly push their agenda. They cry about the death of young black men killed by police while ignoring all of the young black deaths in places like Chicago. They claim Black Lives Matter while ignoring the number one killer of black babies is abortion.

    Many Progressives clamor for equality and cultural acceptance but then decry and criticize those with differing opinions. I support gay rights and equality but the thought of two men fucking each other in the ass is absolutely disgusting and repulsive to me. But many dismiss my support for their rights and focus on chastising me for not embracing the act itself.

    It’s not people’s individuality being less valued but more so that a segment is telling those people that their individuality doesn’t matter in the name of the “greater good”.

    You will not find a bigger ally in the fight for cannabis legalization and equality from me. But when we focus on one segment to grant reprieves to you in essence dismiss the rest and create exclusion. Like I have said many times here, most MMJ patients and businesses could care less about legalization for selfish reasons. Even D.C.’s own initiative was argued on the best interest to lessen the black man being targeted. Why do whites not matter as much?

    And it is people like me who has no party affiliation that will be needed to bring people who are against legalization from both parties because I refuse to accept either party’s talking points as gospel.

    Progressives are bad for this country just as much as RINOS are. Both have such different ideologues when it comes to social issues but seem to have no problem fucking the American tax payer over. $1.1 trillion is going to be wasted and both parties did it. A simple fix is to follow the Constitution and just leave people the fuck alone.

  12. Yes. I hate to see the economy turned over to a Republican Congress. I’ve been walking on this planet long enough now to have witnessed for myself which political party handles the economy. And it doesn’t begin with an R.

  13. This has been a very illuminating exchange. I now understand that two votes were taken, and the results were different, so in the original cat fight, each party was exactly half right.

  14. If you are implying that Obama’s loyalty has been bought on this topic by the pharmaceuticals, I would say that is probably true. It would certainly explain the bizarre zig-zags in Justice Department activities over the last few years. As for Obamacare, I think Obama did something in that legislation that absolutely needed to be done. We can argue about how it could have been done better, but the fact is that the US has been and still is way behind most of the developed world when it comes to having a rational health care policy. Basic healthcare is a human right.

  15. I am hoping Adam Eidinger is going to follow through by running against Harris. I wonder how much the Eastern Shore of Maryland might be earning from hemp and cannabis cultivation to supply DC. But Harris is to dumb to know what a good idea this would be. I think the voters on the eastern shore, where there is such an abundance of straight-shooting farmer conservatives, deserve better.

  16. I hear you and understand you, but why do so many others on your team so readily replace being told what to think by “progressives” with being told what to think by Fox News, a media that is provably motivated by partisan politics which promotes a notoriously error-prone style of reporting the reflects a definite ideological motive? And when the Republicans put up someone like Sarah Palin on the national stage you really have to wonder how far they want to push the “dumbness is good” meme.

    That is what concerns me. I think the cultural issues are something we can learn to live with differences about. Those feelings you are talking about are a product of centuries of pretty serious oppression of women and anyone non-white. Behind all those -isms are real people who just want to be accepted so that they don’t have to hide who they are or who they chose to love. Even the Irish, when they came to America, were subjected to horrible ethnic prejudice on the part of the English status quo. So to me it is understandable that there is going to be a certain amount of religious zeal in celebrating the progress that has been made, and I can also understand why that makes some people uncomfortable, as if their own individuality is somehow valued less as a result. But that’s a choice too.

  17. Good data.

    I am of both minds.

    I think both parties, in different ways, have sold out the best interests of the American people. The fact that even with some decent leadership now,from both sides of the aisle, they can’t even think of acting to repeal schedule one classification is perhaps only the most obvious and likely-to-be agreed upon evidence showing that both parties are rotten. Having said that, I continue to prefer the values and knowledge base (on most topics) of the Democrats to the Republicans. There is also no question that in *the short and medium term* (emphasis important) the Democrats are much better at managing the economy. This pattern is pretty clear over the last thirty years at least, maybe for most of the 20th century.

  18. Dirty coal, dirty tar sands oil, leaky XL pipelines, climate change denier’s being in charge of Senate/ House environmental committees, mountain-top remover’s, Mickey’ D’s in our National Parks, Fracking, perpetual war, torture, Rig tree’s off of every coast, income inequality, opening the Gates of the Arctic to the fossil fuel titan’s, anti-cannabis organizations, government interference in a woman’s reproductive health/ personal family medical decisions, etc, etc. I must disagree. These are just a few of the significant differences between America’s two major political parties. Is there corrupting money involved? Yes. Which political party just made this worse?

  19. I try to be civil and polite. Why call me a moron simply because you were wrong? That’s ignorance. Now go back outside and play with your tire iron and rope swing.

  20. Scott’s slavish allegiance to the Democratic party is super creepy. Who does he think he is, Renfield?

  21. LOL — Perhaps the reason I didn’t mention anything you’re talking about is because you’re having an argument all by yourself. I’d have to grant you have a reason to argue with me (other than soothing your ego) to engage you. So far, I’ve just been mocking your efforts. Like I said, I’m not reading these comments. It was obvious to me from your first comment you had nothing to say worth reading on this thread.

    Because you fell into the same old formula. I write I comment, you reply. If I simply up-vote a comment — you reply! And we both know why that is — you keep losing to me over and over, and you want another shot at the title. But the problem is your approach: you never have the high ground when we argue because your default SOP is assuming you already have it. Sorry, Scott — being Liberal doesn’t automatically make you correct. Punting you off that pedestal every couple weeks keeps my teeth sharp.

    Another reason I allow you to make a spectacle out of yourself like this is because I’m amazed at how quickly you come back for more. It’s like every two weeks, your brain forgets how upset you were. Or maybe, like most Liberals, you have baseless optimism that surely this time you’ll get it right. Surely this time, I won’t strip you of the last morsel of self-respect you have… LOL (we’ll see)

    Actually, let’s see if I can manipulate you into dragging this on until next week, when I’ll have more time to crush your ego to splinters and cast them to the wind. Frankly, you have a better chance of pulling me into a debate on national politics, given the subject of the article.

    The hook is baited. Now, I just sit back and wait for you to chomp on it.

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