“Finally,” Gabbard said on the House floor in remarks later distributed in a press release. “This is a historic moment that so many here and across the country have been working towards to take this step to end America’s destructive and costly war on drugs that has turned everyday Americans into criminals and torn families apart ruining so many people’s lives.”
Democrat Ed Case of Hawaii also voted in favor of the bill, which now goes on to the GOP-controlled Senate where its prospects are dim, according to news reports.
The bill also “creates pathways for ownership opportunities in the emerging industry,” says NBC News, allowing veterans to obtain medical cannabis recommendations from Veteran Affairs doctors, “and establishes funding sources to reinvest in communities disproportionately affected by the war on drugs.”
Friday’s vote “was the first time a full chamber of Congress has taken up the issue of federally decriminalizing cannabis.”
Five Republicans voted with 222 Democrats in approving the bill, while 158 GOP members voted against it along with six Democrats. Thirty-eight members did not vote.
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