With little money, a late start and an uphill battle in polls, opponents of the initiative to legalize marijuana in the District are hoping a public debate will give their cause the airtime they can’t afford to buy.
The Two. Is. Enough. D.C. (TIE DC) advocacy group, which formed last month, has until Nov. 4 to persuade the majority of city voters to reject a ballot initiative that would make it legal to grow, use and possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana in the nation’s capital.
Founder Will Jones said his group, which garners its name from the notion that two legal drugs — tobacco and alcohol — are enough in society, is contacting local television and radio stations about hosting a debate in coming weeks between himself and Adam Eidinger of the DC Cannabis Campaign.
Mr. Jones, 24, said a debate would allow him to challenge what he called misleading information that the DC Cannabis Campaign has used to further its cause and to clarify the line between legalization and a D.C. law enacted this summer that decriminalizes possession of small amounts of the drug.
A poll by The Washington Post this year found that 63 percent of D.C. residents approve of marijuana legalization. With the numbers in his favor, Mr. Eidinger said, it isn’t in his cause’s best interest to give his opponents free press, but he is trying to strike a deal under which TIE DC would disclose its financial backers ahead of a debate.
Both groups are due to file campaign finance reports Oct. 27, but neither would disclose fundraising numbers ahead of the deadline.
“The only reason I’ve been …read more