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Meddlesome Maryland Rep. Andy Harris, who actively tried to block D.C. from legalizing marijuana last year, faces two Republican challengers in the primary race for his state’s first congressional district. If unseated, Harris would lose the bully pulpit (and vote) he’s used to interfere with D.C.’s local autonomy.
Sean Jackson Sr., the commander of Maryland’s State Police Bel Air Barrack, announced his candidacy this morning, the Baltimore Sun reports. Although he’s positioning himself as loyal conservative, Jackson tells the Sun he won’t waste his time attempting to root out marijuana, in D.C. or elsewhere. (“We have spent so many years combating marijuana,” he says. “I just think we need to concentrate on the hardcore drugs.”) Meanwhile, Harris’ second opponent, Michael D. Smigiel, Sr., has supported legal pot legislation and has shown “a libertarian streak,” according to the paper.
City Desk reached out to local anti-Harris political action committee Not Your District and received the following statement from chair Justin Robinson:
At this time Not Your District PAC has not formally endorsed either of Rep. Andy Harris’ primary opponents. We are encouraged, however, that both have actively highlighted the incumbent’s tyrannical urge to impose his personal views on marijuana policy upon D.C. residents. We look forward to hearing more about their plans to respect local government in the District and advance autonomy and statehood for Washington D.C.
As an incumbent, Harris has the name recognition and donor base that could help him get reelected. But we’re not counting any chickens before they hatch.
Photo from Andy Harris’ website