BELLEVUE, WA – Responding to statements made by Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes Thursday to KING 5 News that the so-called “gun violence tax” is “not too drastic,” Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation – which is suing the city over the tax – suggested that Holmes should apply that same principle to legalized marijuana sales in the city.
SAF, along with the National Rifle Association, National Shooting Sports Foundation, filed suit last month against the new tax, asserting that it violates the state firearms preemption law.
Gottlieb recalled that Holmes was among the first in line at a Seattle pot shop in July 2014 to purchase a couple of two-gram bags of weed, one of which he said he was keeping “for posterity, and one for personal enjoyment at some point when it’s appropriate.”
“For Holmes to brush off this new gun and ammunition tax as no big deal suggests he’s been smoking some of that weed already,” Gottlieb quipped. “A person would have to be stoned to believe that a tax, no matter how large or small, doesn’t affect somebody.
“But,” he continued, “if that’s the way economics works in Pete’s alternate universe, then he should support a tax of $25 on the sale of every ounce of marijuana, and a five-cent tax on every joint. Think of the money that could be raised for drug treatment and gang violence prevention programs. It would force drug gangs and pot smokers to pay for those efforts.”
Last year, Holmes had to publicly apologize for bringing his newly-purchased bags of pot back to his office. Gottlieb thinks he should now apologize to Seattle firearms retailers for putting them at an unfair disadvantage with competing stores outside the city by driving away customers.
“I’ll reiterate what I told KING News Thursday,” Gottlieb said. “If Seattle officials really think that criminals are going to buy their guns at gun stores and pay a tax, they’re crazy, or maybe they’ve just been smoking a few too many doobies.”