Federal Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Comes to House Vote
The U.S. House of Representatives will vote on a bill to decriminalize marijuana in September.
According to a report from Politico, the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act of 2019, or MORE Act of 2019, will come to a vote in the House sometime in September.
If passed, the MORE ACT would remove marijuana as a scheduled controlled substance and would also give those affected by the drug war a chance to expunge convictions and conduct sentencing review hearings related to federal cannabis offenses. The bill was originally introduced by Rep. Nadler, Jerrold [D-NY] on July 23, 2019, and has been co-sponsored by some major players such as Senator Kamala Harris, Senator Cory Booker, and Senator Elizabeth Warren. The bill would not legalize marijuana in every state, but would give states the opportunity to legalize and devise rules and regulations for production, consumption, and sales.
Hemp was legalized in Texas last year, and defined as a cannabis plant with less than 0.3% of THC. Following the legalization of hemp, misdemeanor marijuana cases across the state dropped by more than half, largely in part because of the inability of Texas labs to test for THC content. This led some cities in Texas to pass proposals that ask officers to cite and release those found in possession of small amounts of marijuana.
Those who have been fighting for decriminalization state that the de-stigmatization of marijuana will ultimately be the key. As an advocate for marijuana, this vote is extremely exciting. While I believe it's unlikely to pass, it demonstrates the shift in perception of marijuana.
Do you think that states should have the right to vote on the legalization of marijuana?
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