Washington, D.C. has Legalized Recreational Marijuana.
As of 12:01 AM today, recreational marijuana is legal in the capital city of the United States of America. Voters approved the law, Initiative 71, in November 2014 with 70% support. The law legalizes the possession and private use of cannabis, but does not legalize public consumption. It also does not allow for the sale of recreational marijuana, which has been legal in Colorado and Washington state for over a year.
What is in Washington D.C.’s Legal Marijuana Law?:
- Allows possession of up to two ounces of marijuana for adults 21 and older.
- Allows possession of up to six pot plants.
- Allows consumption of marijuana on private property.
- Allows people to give another person 21 or older up to 1 ounce of pot.
- Allows the use or sale of paraphernalia for the use, growing, or processing of marijuana or cannabis.
- Does not allow sales of marijuana.
- Does not allow public consumption of marijuana.
Republicans in Congress Are Attempting to Block the Law
While Washington D.C. is mostly self-governed, the U.S. Constitution gives Congress final say over D.C.’s laws. In December, House Republicans attached an amendment to this year’s budget that would prohibit the District of Columbia from using any funds to “enact any law, rule, or regulation to legalize or otherwise reduce penalties associated with the possession, use, or distribution of any schedule I substance.”
House Oversight Chairman Threatens Prison for D.C. Mayor
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, and Rep. Mark Meadows, R-North Carolina, said in a letter Tuesday that the city of Washington D.C. would be violating federal laws if it continued with Mayor Muriel Bowser’s plan to implement the popular law. “You will be doing so in knowing and willful violation of the law”, they warned. In an interview with The Washington Post, Chaffetz threatened the mayor with prison saying, “You can go to prison for this. We’re not playing a little game here.”
D.C. Mayor Moves Forward With Marijuana Legalization
“We would encourage the Congress to not be so concerned with overturning what 7-in-10 voters said should be the law in the District of Columbia,” Mayor Bowser said Wednesday afternoon at a press conference.
On her Twitter account Bowser wrote, “My Administration is committed to upholding the will of DC voters. We will implement Initiative 71 in a thoughtful, responsible way.”
My Administration is committed to upholding the will of DC voters. We will implement Initiative 71 in a thoughtful, responsible way.
— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) February 25, 2015