DC pot activists arrested at 4/20 Capitol Hill protest

DC pot activists arrested at 4/20 Capitol Hill protest

DC pot activists arrested at 4/20 Capitol Hill protest

Recreational marijuana use was legalized in the District of Columbia in 2014, but it remains a federal crime and is banned on Capitol grounds.

Giving adults access to cannabis and individuals and small business owners legal protection in all 50 states is what the American people have been asking for, said Adam Eidinger, co-founder of the advocacy group DCMJ.

She said the seven had been arrested after police witnessed them distributing marijuana to passers-by at the intersection of First and Constitution. Thursday, April 20, 2017, marks marijuana cultures high holiday, 4/20, when college students gather - at 4:20 p.m. - in clouds of smoke on campus quads and pot shops in legal weed states thank their customers with discounts.

DCMJ announced another event for Monday, where members will go the Capitol and smoke marijuana to violate federal laws and get arrested on goal.

To commemorate the occasion, advocates for legalized pot handed out free joints to congressional staffers and reporters on Capitol Hill.

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions has expressed his opposition to legalized marijuana, saying "I'm not sure we're going to be a better, healthier nation if we have marijuana sold at every corner grocery store". Attempts by the D.C. Council to regulate the sale of marijuana in the District have hit a roadblock in Congress, which has veto authority over the council. He said he had begun smoking marijuana regularly six months ago to manage chronic pain.

DCMJ is rounding up activists for an event on Monday directly outside the U.S. Capitol on the east side of the building. Basically anyone with a valid congressional ID can get free weed.

Rules regarding the use of marijuana for recreational purposes vary throughout the region. While officials allowed the event to proceed, the Capitol Police later attributed the arrests to the organizers' intention to distribute marijuana. As Schiller noted, members of Congress and their staffs are not subject to the drug testing statutes that keep other federal employees, including contractors who work in Congress, from consuming marijuana.

The invitation notes that the event is open for "all members of Congress, congressional staff, interns, Capitol Hill support staff, and credentialed journalists who are over 21 years of age".

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