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The bill would allow states to decide marijuana legalization for themselves and expunge cannabis records for some.
A chamber of Congress will vote to remove cannabis from the federal list of controlled substance for the first time in the nation’s history. The U.S. House of Representative confirmed its historic vote will occur next month and would effectively decriminalize cannabis nationwide.
The legislation in question, known as the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment, and Expungement Act (MORE Act), would not legalize marijuana at the federal level. Instead it would remove cannabis from its Schedule I drug classification, which the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) defines as “drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.”
Once removed, states could then decide whether to legalize cannabis for medical or recreational use. The bill would also expunge cannabis records for some and create a fund to support individuals impacted by the enforcement of marijuana laws.
“Passage of the MORE Act is essential in order to truly right the wrongs of federal marijuana criminalization, and to once and for all allow the majority of states that have legalized cannabis for either medical or adult-use to embrace these policies free from the threat of undue federal prosecution or interference,” said NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano.
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