- The Washington Times - Monday, March 17, 2014

The deputy campaign manager for Delegate Barbara J. Comstock, a Virginia Republican running for a U.S. House seat, has been arrested for possession of marijuana.

Alison Rentschler has a hearing scheduled for April 17 in Loudoun General District Court on a misdemeanor charge stemming from a Feb. 22 incident, according to court records. Marijuana possession is illegal in Virginia, carrying a penalty of up to 30 days in jail and a $500 fine.

“Alison quit the campaign yesterday, but we did not know about any of this until you called,” Ray Allen, senior strategist for the campaign, told a reporter Monday. “She was a valued employee for two of our campaigns.”

Mr. Allen said Mrs. Comstock, who represents parts of Fairfax and Loudoun counties, opposes legalizing marijuana. She is running against five others in a firehouse primary to replace retiring GOP Rep. Frank R. Wolf in Congress.

A bill was introduced in the Virginia state legislature this session that would make so-called medical marijuana lawful, but it died in committee. It will carry over to the next legislative session.

This was not Ms. Rentschler’s first brush with the law. On Feb. 29, 2012, she was arrested in Alexandria for first-degree DWI, court records show. She was found guilty, fined $300 and given a six-month suspended jail sentence.

She was ordered to not drive a car for a year, except to and from work and mandatory Alcohol Safety Action Program meetings.

A week before her most recent arrest, Ms. Rentschler tweeted: “I’m grateful I don’t hide vodka in water bottles anymore. I now take desperate swigs confidently from random h2o bottles in my car #grateful.”

Ms. Rentschler, a D.C. resident, worked on Mrs. Comstock’s campaigns for the past two years.

The aide noted Thursday on her Facebook page, “I love knocking doors where people remember me and are just as excited as me for Delegate Comstock’s race!! Woot woot!”

Ms. Rentschler did not respond to a request for comment.

Emily Miller is senior editor of opinion for The Washington Times and author of “Emily Gets Her Gun” (Regnery, 2013).

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