For the first time in congressional history, the House of Representatives voted to pass a measure that would decriminalize marijuana use at the federal level — months after pulling the bill amid worries the controversial vote could cause some lawmakers to lose tight races in November.
The vote passed 228-164, mostly down party lines, with just five Republicans voting in favor of the measure. Six Democrats voted to oppose.
While the federal government continues to criminalize cannabis, House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler stressed that 36 states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical cannabis while 15 states and the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis for adult recreational use. Nadler said the legislation “would reverse the failed policy of criminalizing marijuana on the federal level and would take steps to address the heavy toll this policy has taken across the country, particularly on communities color.”
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