By IOAN GRILLO
The Associated Press
MEXICO CITY — Mexican lawmakers are working to revive their bill decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana, cocaine and heroin, and hope to override a veto if necessary, saying the reform will help curb drug-related violence that has killed more than 600 people this year.
President Vicente Fox called on Congress to drop decriminalization from the drug-law overhaul after intense lobbying from the U.S. State Department and mayors of several U.S. border cities, who called it a disaster that would encourage hordes of young Americans to cross the border for "drug tourism." Mexico's Roman Catholic Church also opposes it.
With the July 2 election looming and lawmakers limited to one term, any reform could be stalled until after a new president is inaugurated in December.
"Consumption and addiction are public health issues, while drug dealing is a criminal problem," said Rep. Eliana Garcia, who worked with the federal attorney general's office as well as the health and public safety departments to draft the original bill. "When you mix them you get corruption."