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News Alert: U.S. House Of Representatives Votes To Decriminalize Cannabis

December 4, 2020

In a landmark vote this afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation decriminalizing and descheduling cannabis. In removing cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act, the MORE Act clears the way for full legalization to follow. It also allows for taxation of cannabis and lays out a framework for redressing the wrongs of the war on drugs, including a requirement that federal courts release prisoners serving sentences for non-violent cannabis offenses.

The bill, which was approved 228-164, is the first legislation of its kind to pass in either chamber of Congress. Its approval marks a momentous step toward federal legalization, even though the Senate is unlikely to pass it this session.

Legalization advocates nonetheless cheered the news, pointing to its historic significance. “This vote represents the first major step toward finally dismantling cannabis prohibition at the federal level,” said Steve Fox of the Cannabis Trade Federation. “Unfortunately, the MORE Act will not be taken up by the Senate during the remainder of this session of Congress. But work will begin anew in January. Today is a day to step back and appreciate how far we have come.”

We’ll have more on the MORE Act and its significance for the future of cannabis in the U.S. in next week’s Shanken News Daily Cannabis Edition.—Danny Sullivan

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