GOP Opposition Shoots Down New York City Pot Proposal
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo planned to reduce the number of “stop and frisk” arrests in the state by downgrading the public possession of marijuana from a misdemeanor to a violation, however members of the Republican party have dismissed that plan.
The ordinance violation proposal was supported by both New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly.
Because the legislation season is coming to an end the issue will be tabled until a new session begins.
In attacking the issue Republican Majority Leader Dean Skelos declared:
“Being able to just walk around with 10 joints in each ear, and it only be a violation, I think that’s wrong.”
New York City actually decriminalized the possession of small amount of marijuana in 1977 however the stop and frisk policy meant a larger number of people had their pot revealed in public by police, at which point they were placed under arrested.
The executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union says of the GOP’s move to stop the measure:
“It’s disappointing that the legislature can’t put politics aside when justice is on the line. Arresting and jailing tens of thousands of people each year for marijuana possession does not make New York safer. It drives young New Yorkers into the criminal justice system.”
The next legislative session will not begin until January 2013 unless Governor Cuomo holds a special session to vote on the stop and frisk measure involving marijuana possession.
Do you think the law should be allowed to pass or were Republicans right in holding back the decision?