House Prepares to Rubber-Stamp Drug Czar Ad Fiasco

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by RMJL, Oct 1, 2003.


    House Prepares to Rubber-Stamp Drug Czar Ad Fiasco

    WASHINGTON, D.C. -- In a move that surprised government-reform advocates, the leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives has moved to fast-track reauthorization of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and its hotly controversial anti-drug advertising campaign, the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign.

    The ONDCP Reauthorization Act of 2003 (H.R. 2086) has been placed on the "Suspensions" calendar -- a list of bills deemed non-controversial and which are thus considered under a suspension of the normal rules. The move makes it likely the bill will be approved with minimal debate, no amendments, and no recorded vote.

    "To call the ONDCP reauthorization `non-controversial' is truly shocking," said Steve Fox, director of government relations for the Marijuana Policy Project in Washington, D.C. "There was a huge controversy this spring over provisions that would have allowed the drug czar to use his ad campaign for political purposes, and later all Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee voted to completely eliminate funding for the ad campaign. In fact, all Democrats but one on the Judiciary Committee voted to delete the entire bill."

    "Since then, the controversy has only grown," Fox added. "With the just-released PRIDE Survey showing huge spikes in teen use of marijuana, cocaine, and heroin even as ONDCP was soaking the airwaves with its hysterical ads, a growing chorus of voices -- from the National Taxpayers' Union to the Los Angeles Times -- is calling for the program to be cut back or ended. We hope that U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), the Democrats' floor manager for this bill, will fight to get this bill off the suspensions calendar so that all members can debate the merits of spending an additional one billion dollars on this wasteful and ineffective campaign."

    The PRIDE Survey can be found on-line at

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