Will Washington DC Have Cannabis Legalization on the Ballot?

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It’s official: petitioners in Washington DC have announced that they have enough signatures to have their proposal to legalize cannabis placed on the ballot this November.

According to a press release from this Monday, June 30th, the DC Cannabis Campaign has collected over 60,000 signatures in support of Initiative 71, which is more than twice the number needed to qualify for inclusion on the ballot. While this is certainly encouraging and shows a huge amount of voter support for Initiative 71, there is some powerful opposition to this law.

A Republican national Congressman from Maryland’s 1st district, Rep. Andy Harris, is doing everything he can to subvert the will of the people in Washington DC. He attached a rider to the budget that makes it illegal for the District of Columbia to use funds to relax the penalties on recreational cannabis use. That means that they can’t implement the decriminalization law signed into law this March and worse, they can’t print ballots that include Initiative 71 on them.

In response to this gross over-reach of an outside authority, the mayor of Washington DC has called for citizens of the city to boycott the Eastern Shore of Maryland, particularly Ocean City. Harris has responded with disdain for the people whose will and voice he’s ignoring, claiming they’d rather vacation in Ocean City than have their democratic process respected.

“Spending the weekend on the beautiful, family friendly Eastern Shore is more important than increasing drug use by D.C. teenagers,” he is quoted as saying in response to the boycott. Optimists are hopeful that the House will remove the rider that Harris attached in the Senate before approving the budget.

You can support the DC Cannabis Campaign by following them on Facebook here. Please do the same for DC Vote, the group supporting/organizing the boycott of Harris’ district.

Ladybud Magazine will continue following the progress of cannabis legalization in Washington DC and elsewhere.


Photo Credit: tpsdave under Public Domain via Pixabay