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House to hold markup Wednesday on marijuana decriminalization bill

House to hold markup Wednesday on marijuana decriminalization bill
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The House Judiciary Committee will hold a markup Wednesday on legislation to decriminalize marijuana federally and reassess marijuana-related convictions, the panel announced Monday.

Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerTop Republicans praise Trump's Flynn pardon Democratic impeachment leaders blast Trump's pardon of Flynn Democrats accuse GSA of undermining national security by not certifying Biden win MORE (D-N.Y.) will join other House Democrats, including Reps. Barbara LeeBarbara Jean LeeDemocrats brush off calls for Biden to play hardball on Cabinet picks Top contender for Biden Defense chief would be historic pick Overnight Defense: 5 US service members killed in international peacekeeping helicopter crash in Egypt | Progressives warn Biden against Defense nominee with contractor ties | Trump executive order to ban investment in Chinese military-linked companies MORE (Calif.) and Earl BlumenauerEarl BlumenauerOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Barrasso to seek top spot on Energy and Natural Resources Committee | Forest Service finalizes rule weakening environmental review of its projects | Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight Restaurants brace for long COVID-19 winter MORE (Ore.), on Tuesday to highlight the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act. Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisBiden announces all-female White House communications team Biden to nominate Neera Tanden, Cecilia Rouse to economic team: WSJ Memo to Biden: Go big — use the moment to not only rebuild but to rebuild differently MORE (D-Calif.) has introduced similar legislation in the Senate.

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"Our marijuana laws disproportionately harm individuals and communities of color, leading to convictions that damage job prospects, access to housing, and the ability to vote,” Nadler said in a statement.

"Recognizing this, many states have legalized marijuana. It’s now time for us to remove the criminal prohibitions against marijuana at the federal level. That’s why I introduced the MORE Act, legislation which would assist communities disproportionately impacted by the enforcement of these laws,” he added.

Lee said in a statement, “I’m pleased that this critical bill includes key tenets from my own legislation to right the wrongs of the failed and racist War on Drugs by expunging criminal convictions, reinvesting in communities of color through restorative justice, and promoting equitable participation in the legal marijuana industry."

“I applaud Chairman Nadler for his leadership and look forward to seeing this bill move out of committee,” she added.

In addition to federal decriminalization, the bill would require federal courts to expunge prior convictions and allow offenders to request expungement. It would also authorize a 5 percent sales tax on marijuana products to create a community reinvestment fund for communities adversely affected by the war on drugs.

The MORE Act would also authorize Small Business Administration funding for cannabis-related businesses and provide funding for programs that reduce barriers to marijuana licensing for the people most likely to have been affected by the war on drugs.

It would also require the Bureau of Labor Statistics to collect demographic data for those in the legal marijuana industry and ensure that people of color and low-income people are not frozen out.