House committee attempts to block D.C. weed decriminalization law
Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee voted to amend D.C.’s marijuana decriminalization law and effectively limit the District’s ability to decriminalize the drug.
Mayor Vincent Gray signed the bill in March, but, to the chagrin of weed activists throughout the city, the new law came under scrutiny in Congressional hearings, where many Republicans attacked the District’s decision.
Congress has a 60-day period in which they can block any laws passed in D.C., something they’ve done only three times since 1979.
That 60-day window has closed, however, and the Appropriation Committee’s new amendment technically does not block the bill. It merely cuts all the funding out from under it. Thanks to the Constitution, all spending in D.C. must be approved by Congress.
The 28-21 vote went the way you would expect, with only one Democrat voting against decriminalization: a Texan, according to City Paper.
The House’s amendment is not approved yet, however. It must clear the House and get the President’s approval first. In the mean time, Vox guesses that no one’s going to jail for small marijuana possession.
Photo: Mark via Flickr