City Desk

The Needle: Virginia is for Stoners Edition

Yes, Virginia, You Put Your Weed In There: In the near future, Virginia may no longer just be the place to buy legal guns and cheap tobacco. It'll also be the place to go buy pot! Legislators in the Old Dominion are studying whether to allow marijuana sales at state-owned liquor stores. Prediction: This won't happen. But if it does, it'll generate a lot more cash than lotto does. +3

Trent Franks For D.C. Council: Election year abortion politics are complicated. Conservative lawmakers want to show they're fighting the culture wars, but they don't really want to deal with a backlash from constituents who—reasonably—don't want their own rights restricted. Fortunately for Arizona Republican Rep. Trent Franks, there's always the District! Franks will introduce legislation next week to ban abortions after 20 weeks of a pregnancy—never mind that D.C. is overwhelmingly more pro-choice than his own state is. The National Right to Life Committee is a big fan; they say there's no need to consult District officials about the bill because, hey, Congress can do whatever it wants. -4

Whose Court? Our Court: The Supreme Court became the latest seat of national power to be occupied today, as Occupy D.C. protesters marched, sang, and chanted outside to protest the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling that more or less ended any pretense that big corporations don't run politics in this country. Police arrested 12 demonstrators. Had the protest managed to actually take over the building, we presume the court would have been renamed (a la the People's Pentagon) the People's Court. Chief Justice Joseph Wapner presiding? +2

Let It Mix: Is there any weather term drearier than "wintry mix?" None of the excitement of a blizzard, none of the beauty of a clear day, not even the sheer terror of, say, a hurricane. That's what's in store for the District and environs tonight through early tomorrow afternoon. On the plus side, it's Friday night, so most people's commutes won't be ruined. On the minus side, your Saturday may be. -1

Yesterday's Needle rating: 41 Today's score: 0 Friday bonus: +2 Today's Needle rating: 42

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  • John Thacker

    "the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling that more or less ended any pretense that big corporations don't run politics in this country."

    The ruling that said a bunch of citizens could get together, form a non-profit, and put out their own documentary criticizing a politician even though it was within 60 days of an election? What, your objection is that you have to be a big media corporation in order to put out a documentary attacking politicians?

    Without Citizens United, the Reddit, Google, Wikipedia, and other corporate protests against SOPA and PIPA could be banned-- but the backroom lobbying of the MPAA, RIAA, and US Chamber of Commerce would somehow find a way to keep going.

    I favor free speech.

  • Anoymous

    George Washington was more than just the founder of our country.

    He also grew weed at Mount Vernon.

    Apparently, James Madison was the first to manufacture the TokeMaster, and Thomas Jefferson was the inspiration for Jefferson Airplane.