Marijuana Policy Project
Curved Papers

Cannabis Caucus Urges House to Pass the MORE Act

Image via FreedomLeaf

A letter sent by Congressional Cannabis Caucus members Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Barbara Lee to their fellow House members on November 10 states:

"There’s no question: cannabis prohibition will end soon. We should lead the way by passing H.R.3884 - Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act."

The Congress members continue:

"Last week’s results reaffirm the strong bipartisan support to reform our failed cannabis prohibition. Even in states where Republicans easily swept elections, like in Mississippi and South Dakota, cannabis-related ballot measures passed with strong support. The success in Arizona, Montana, Mississippi, New Jersey and South Dakota means that cannabis will be legal for adult use in 15 states and medical use in 36 states. More than 109 million people will live in states where cannabis is legal for adults to use, that is more than one in three Americans. In total, almost 99% of Americans will live in states with some form of legal cannabis. We cannot ignore the will of the people any longer."

House Reps. Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)

The letter ends with the following statement:

"The House was poised to vote on the MORE Act, the most comprehensive federal cannabis reform legislation we’ve ever seen, back in September. As the House kept our focus on providing struggling Americans with relief from COVID-19, we received commitment from our Caucus leadership that Congress would take steps to end the failed War on Drugs by voting on the MORE Act before the year was over.  We have an opportunity and duty to correct course now. As we head into the lame-duck session, we must remember the promise we made to the American people to pass the MORE Act."

Like the letter says, efforts to have a vote on the MORE Act were tabled in September. Now, Politico reports, the House is planning on a vote in the first two weeks of December.

Introduced in 2019 by Rep. Gerald Nadler in the House and by Vice President elect Sen. Kamala Harris in the Senate, the MORE Act “aims to correct the historical injustices of failed drug policies that have disproportionately impacted communities of color and low-income communities by requiring re-sentencing and expungement of prior convictions. This will create new opportunities for individuals as they work to advance their careers, education and overall quality of life. Immigrants will also benefit from the Act, as they will no longer be subject to deportation or citizenship denial based on even a minor marijuana offense. It also ensures that all benefits in the law are available to juvenile offenders.”

RELATED: Rep. Hakim Jeffries Hypes the MORE Act

Highlights of the MORE Act include removing marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, expunging prior convictions, creating an Opportunity Trust Fund, providing non-discrimination protections and ensuring that “people of color and those who are economically disadvantaged are participating in the industry.”

The House version (HR 3884) has more than 100 sponsors and has received endorsements from ACLU, Drug Policy Alliance, Human Rights Watch, NAACP, NORML and NOW.

 

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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of CelebStoner.com, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.