Friday, December 4th, 2020
US House of Representatives for that
Will marijuana be legal across the US soon?
228 MPs in the US House of Representatives want to legalize marijuana nationwide. The 164 dissenting votes come mainly from the Republican side. They hold the majority in the Senate, so the bill is likely to fail there. Nevertheless, there is talk of a signal effect.
The US House of Representatives voted to legalize marijuana at the federal level. 228 MPs in the Democratic-dominated Chamber of Parliament spoke out on Friday in favor of removing marijuana from the United States’ Narcotics Act. 164 MPs voted against it. Most of the votes against came from among the Republicans.
The bill is likely to fail in the Senate. Republicans have a majority in this Chamber of Parliament. The vote in the House of Representatives still sends out a signal. A spokesman for then-candidate and now-elected President Joe Biden said in September that the Democrat was in favor of decriminalizing marijuana and the automatic deletion of criminal records for possession of the drug.
Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris – who will remain in the Senate until next month – also supports legalization. It has introduced a corresponding bill to the Senate. Biden and Harris are due to be sworn in on January 20th in Washington. A number of US states have already legalized marijuana, and other states are planning to decriminalize it.
As president, Biden could also address the issue at the federal level without Congress passing legislation. The Chairman of the Judiciary Committee in the House of Representatives, Jerry Nadler, had introduced the draft to the Chamber. The Democrat stated after the vote: “For far too long we have treated marijuana as a criminal justice issue rather than a matter of personal choice and public health.” The draft law would also take long overdue steps to address the problem of the many victims in the “war on drugs”, which the latter had called for, particularly among minorities.