May 14, 2018
The federal legislation—introduced by Booker on August 1—would eliminate marijuana’s status as a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substance Act. In addition, the bill would mandate that federal courts expunge the records of Americans who have prior marijuana convictions related to use or possession.
“It’s the right thing to do. And I know this as a former prosecutor. I know it as a senator,” Harris said in a video announcing her decision. “I just look at what we want as a country and where we need to be instead of where we’ve been.
“African-Americans use marijuana at roughly the same rate as whites, but are approximately four times more likely to be arrested for possession,” Harris said in the same Now This exclusive posting. “The fact is, marijuana laws are not applied and enforced the same way for all people.”
Harris believes the move to decriminalize marijuana will prevent the Justice Department from enforcing laws that are “unjust and unfair.”
“The war on drugs was a war on communities,” Harris said, adding that police should be dealing with more serious drugs and crimes. “Not somebody smoking a joint.”
According to the report by The Hill, so far, nine states and Washington, D.C. have legalized the drug for recreational use for adults over the age of 21. Michigan will hold a vote to legalize recreational pot this year, potentially making it the tenth state and first in the Midwest to legalize pot.
Based on findings of an April 26 poll by Quinnipiac University, American voters support percent legalizing marijuana nationwide by a margin of 63% to 33% . Support for use of medical marijuana is 93% from coast to coast.
Fully 70% of U.S. registered voters also oppose enforcement of federal laws against marijuana in states that have legalized medical or recreational marijuana.
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