PRESS RELEASE: DC Cannabis Campaign Undeterred Despite Congressional Attempt to Override Election

Friday, December 12, 2014

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DC Cannabis Campaign Undeterred Despite Congressional Attempt to Override Election

WASHINGTON, DC – The DC Cannabis Campaign castigated congressional leaders today for advancing a federal spending bill that threatens a marijuana legalization ballot initiative in the District of Columbia.

“We’re going to fight back against anyone who tries to overturn our election or roll back our rights,” said Adam Eidinger, who chairs the DC Cannabis Campaign and formally proposed Initiative 71. “The people of the District of Columbia have ended marijuana prohibition and we won’t be turning back.”

The ambiguous wording of the congressional rider has left its interpretation open to debate. Although congressional Republicans argue that the rider is intended to overturn the election, others say that a plain reading leaves the law in place.

“Under the alternative reading, Initiative 71 has already been enacted, is self-executing, that is no further D.C. funds or action are needed, and will take effect after the expiration of the congressional layover period,” according to a press release from the office of DC Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton.

Although President Barack Obama spoke against the congressional rider through a spokesman Thursday, he was reported to have personally lobbied members to vote for the bill. Since the appropriations rider primarily targets “Schedule I” controlled substances, the administration could still support Initiative 71’s future by exercising the federal government’s power to reclassify marijuana.

Initiative 71 passed on November 4, 2014, with 70% voting in favor of the measure to legalize the limited possession and cultivation of marijuana.

The DC Cannabis Campaign is the official campaign committee for Ballot Initiative 71. The campaign is a project of residents from across the District of Columbia, Drug Policy Action, and Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps.