That's what happened in El Paso, TX after the City Council voted unanimously for a resolution to call for an open and honest national debate on America's failed "Drug War" policies. They mayor of El Paso promptly vetoed the resolution sparking a week long debate as the City Council tried to override the veto.
Unfortunately, the El Paso city council's override vote ended in a tie, and Mayor John Cook's veto of the unanimously-passed resolution was upheld. It wasn't as if the city council members changed their minds on calling for a national debate; rather, four of the eight council members who originally supported the resolution ultimately reversed their votes under significant federal pressure, with three council members specifically citing two letters: one from U.S. Congressman Silvestre Reyes, and one from the El Paso's state legislative delegation. The letters threatened El Paso with the loss of state and federal dollars if the council voted to override the veto and pass the resolution.
City Rep. Beto O'Rourke, who championed the council resolution, summed it up best: "It's a sad day in America when you are threatened for wanting to have an open debate on an issue that is affecting our country and our region."
When confronted by the Huffington Post, Congressman Reyes said that he is not opposed to a debate on legalization; he only opposed the 'timing,' as it would coincide with President Barack Obama's meeting with Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Congress's debate of the economic stimulus package. Reyes said, "If it's still an issue [after the stimulus passes], I'm not opposed to perhaps even entertaining a hearing. I can look at that if they want to pursue it."
If you are opposed to Federal officials, beureaucrats, and law enforcement "warriors" telling the American Public what it can and cannot discuss or study by threatening to bankrupt a city affected by the poor decisions of those same people you can take action! Visit http://www.DrugWarDebate.com
to ask your federal and state representatives to support a blue ribbon commission reviewing the efficacy of drug prohibition. Please help us hold Congressman Reyes to his pledge!