City Desk

D.C. Medical Marijuana Passes Another Hurdle

A measure to once again ban D.C. from implementing a 1998 medical marijuana initiative failed in a House appropriations committee vote this evening.

The D.C. budget made it out of its appropriations subcommittee without the so-called Barr amendment—a rider, first introduced by Georgia Republican Bob Barr, which has graced the District budget since 1998. But this evening Missouri Republican Jo Ann Emerson attempted to put it back on.

After a short debate, with Jim Moran (D-Va.) standing up to defend District home rule, the Emerson measure failed by a voice vote. The bill still has to survive the House floor, Senate consideration, and conference committee.

Presently, the committee is debating an amendment that would preserve the rider banning the District from funding abortions. It's unclear whether an amendment regarding the District's gun laws will come up this evening.

UPDATE, 10:05 P.M.: The abortion amendment has failed, 26-33. If the bill as passed out of committee is made law, the District will be free to spend local funds on abortion.

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