It’s now legal to get high in the nation’s capital, so long as you do it in private.
A voter-approved initiative legalizing limited recreational use of marijuana took effect Thursday. But with some Republicans on Capitol Hill threatening legal action against the District of Columbia, the future of pot in the federal city remains a bit hazy.
“It's legalization without commercialization,” Adam Eidinger, chairman of the DC Cannabis Campaign, told “Power Players.”
While adults can now legally possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana -- about a large sandwich bag’s worth – it’s still against the law to buy or sell it and smoke in public, according to city officials.
“There are no store fronts where people who are 21 and older can just walk in and buy a bag of marijuana, unless you're a medical marijuana patient,” said Eidinger, who’s has spent the last 15 years campaigning for legal pot in his hometown.
For now, the only legal way to get weed is to grow it. Under the law, District residents are allowed up to six plants.
“And they just can't sell it,” Eidinger said. “As soon as you start deriving income, you're violating the initiative.”
But some Republicans in Congress, which provides a check on District governance under the Constitution, say steps to legalize weed in the District amount to dangerous defiance of federal law.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, who chairs the House Oversight Committee, has even threated prison time for Mayor Muriel Bowser.
The budget bill passed by Congress in December and signed by President Obama explicitly bans D.C. from enacting the marijuana legalization initiative -- despite the fact that it was approved in November by voters at a 2-to-1 margin.
Eidinger says the interference by lawmakers is “undemocratic and offensive.”
“When these out of state, mostly Republican congressman, try to interfere with local democracy here … they make their party look bad,” he said. “They’re supposed to be the party of home rule, of local democracy, of states' rights, of business entrepreneurship, of freedom, and when they go against marijuana, they contradict every one of those things.”
DC’s pot legalization measure comes on the heels of a similar ballot initiative in Alaska, which went into effect Tuesday and legalizes marijuana for private use in that state. Recreational marijuana is also legal in Colorado, Oregon, and the state of Washington.
For more of the interview with Eidinger, including why he believes making pot legal is good for public safety, check out this episode of “Power Players.”
ABC News’ Ali Dukakis, Tom Thornton, Tom D’Annibale and Gary Rosenberg contributed to this episode.