Tags: Rand Paul | budget | gop | dc | pot | congress

GOP Unity and Budget Bill Troubled by DC Pot Law

By    |   Thursday, 11 Dec 2014 12:57 PM

Republicans are divided over marijuana legalization in the District of Columbia, which, while governed by its own council, is also overseen by Congress — where some lawmakers are attempting to thwart the will of the District's residents.

The issue has opened up a can of worms for some in the GOP who believe in state's rights and state autonomy, and a window of opportunity for others who support a conservative social agenda and seek broad control over marijuana use nationwide — a debate that's now tied up in a must-pass $1.1 trillion spending bill, Politico reported.

"Just as the party scrambled to catch up on rapidly changing public opinion on social issues like the rights of gays to serve openly in the military or to marry, the marijuana measure is forcing the party to find its footing on an issue when all Republicans don’t agree," Politico wrote of the divide.

Some have suggested a "too bad" approach, even though the pot referendum passed easily among the 640,000 District residents who are ultimately governed by Congress, creating a power quagmire and a fight for independence.

"That's the way the Constitution was written. If they don't like that oversight, move outside of the federal district to one of the 50 states that is not covered by the jurisdiction of Congress as a whole," Rep. Andy Harris, a Maryland Republican, told Politico.

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, whose views lean more libertarian, sees the issue differently.

"I believe in more local autonomy on that," Paul told Politico. “I think Colorado, the District, most localities should be able to make that decision for themselves.”

Marijuana advocates have been vocal against Congress intervening to oppose the will of District residents, Reuters reported.

The District's representative in Congress, who by law cannot vote, said she is working to remove the anti-pot legislation before the full House can vote on it, Reuters said, even as the government spending bill is set to expire at midnight on Thursday.

"The District of Columbia government and its residents should never be put in the position of uncertainty of any kind about any of their local laws," the representative, Eleanor Holmes Norton, said in a statement.

The issue has spurred protests in Washington as Congress attempts to partially defund the District's law, The Washington Post reported.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat, has urged his colleagues to leave the District alone and allow it to govern itself, the Post said.

D.C. Council member David Grosso told the Post: "Members of Congress of both parties are willing to sell us down the river to get some of their priorities through. Hopefully, people will stand up this time and say, 'Enough is enough.'"

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
Newsfront
Republicans are divided over marijuana legalization in the District of Columbia, which, while governed by its own council, is also overseen by Congress - where some lawmakers are attempting to thwart the will of the District's residents.
budget, gop, dc, pot, congress
449
2014-57-11
Thursday, 11 Dec 2014 12:57 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved