Key Congressional Chairman Plans To Refile Federal Marijuana Legalization Bill This Year

MJ moment

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee confirmed on Thursday that he will be reintroducing his bill to legalize marijuana and promote social equity this year. Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) made the announcement in his opening statement during a Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security hearing that broadly addressed federal drug policy. He said that, this session, he will again file the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act. That bill passed the House in a historic vote last year, but it did not advance in the GOP-controlled Senate. Nadler said the legislation will “remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and to provide restorative justice for communities that have been disproportionally impacted by the War on Drugs.” Advocates broadly cheered the bill’s passage, even if the vote proved more symbolic than practical given Republican opposition. But now with Democrats in control of both chambers of Congress and the White House, reform activists want to see certain changes before the cannabis legislation goes to the floor again. Specifically, they’ve taken issue with a provision that was added at the last minute before the House action requiring a federal permit to operate a “cannabis enterprise”—along with restrictions that could ban people with prior marijuana convictions from being eligible. Lawmakers have signaled that those components would be removed the next time it’s introduced. “For far too long, we have treated marijuana as a criminal justice problem instead of as a matter of personal choice and public health,” the congressman said. “Whatever one’s views are the use of marijuana for recreational or medicinal use, usage arrests prosecution and incarceration at the federal level has been both costly and biased.” “I’ve long believed that the criminalization of marijuana has been a mistake, and the racially disparate enforcement of marijuana laws is only…

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Source : Key Congressional Chairman Plans To Refile Federal Marijuana Legalization Bill This Year

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