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House Republicans Introduce Legislation That Would Federally Decriminalize Marijuana

The majority of Americans support legalizing marijuana

Legislation that would decriminalize marijuana at the federal level was introduced by Republican lawmakers in the House on Nov. 15.

South Carolina Representative Nancy Mace has led the effort, which would regulate the drug more similarly to alcohol. It would also end legal hazards that inhibit cannabis-related businesses.

If passed, the States Reform Act would let states — not the federal government — regulate and prohibit marijuana as they see fit.

According to US News and World Report, “it would prohibit marijuana use by those under 21, restrict advertising, protect access to hiring and benefits for veterans who have used cannabis and expunge the records of people convicted on nonviolent, cannabis-only related offenses.”

“This bill would also support businesses, in particular small businesses. That’s very important,” Mace said at a news conference. “If we were to pass this bill today … businesses would operate and be legal and regulated just like alcohol.”

Mace, who is serving her first term, called the bill a “compromise” following more burdensome legislation proposed by Democrats.

“This legislation, I believe, has something good for everyone, whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican,” Mace told reporters.

Cannabis would no longer be considered a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act. Accordingly, possession of the substance would not be a criminal offense.

“The measure also would allow for expungement of federal convictions in nonviolent cases and provide a framework for federal regulation and enforcement in states that allow the sale of marijuana,” per NBC News.

The bill includes a 3% excise tax on cannabis, which is substantially below the 25% tax proposal from the Senate. Mace said this was intended to prevent the formation of “illicit markets.”

The Senate has also proposed that the Food and Drug Administration regulate marijuana. The Treasury’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau would be tasked with regulating marijuana under the States Reform Act.

While five other Republicans are co-sponsoring the bill, Mace’s bill was denounced by Drew McKissick, the chair of the South Carolina GOP. 

About 68% of Americans support legalizing marijuana, according to a recent Gallup Poll. Democrats are more open to the change, with 83% in favor compared to 50% of Republicans.

Marijuana has already been legalized in 18 states and has been approved for medical use in 37 states. It is, however, illegal under federal law.

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21 responses to “House Republicans Introduce Legislation That Would Federally Decriminalize Marijuana”

  1. wet-specter says:


  2. mmsuchy92 says:

    Yay taxes, a way to ensure the black market stays alive and well. Thanks government, I’ll keep going to my local dude and support him tax-free.

  3. Wolv256 says:

    How about this? You legalize it, you don’t regulate it and don’t tax it? Who the f— are you? How about we just get rid of YOU! Leave me alone! F— the government! Michael Malice was right.

  4. Abraxas_1191 says:

    You are wrong friend. PA medical users are prohibited from owning or purchasing firearms. Also “marijuana addiction” is not a thing. There is no addiction to marijuana. However, the argument could be made for a psychological addiction however there is little to support it.

  5. Blue-236 says:

    It is illegal to use Marijuana and answer the background questions honestly, it specifically asks if you are an illegal drug user. Marijuana is considered an illegal drug by the federal government so you can not legally purchase or own a firearm and use Marijuana, it is the same as if your doing crack. If you have a Marijuana medical card your guns can be taken away or your ccw permit revolked. I don’t think the DEA is going to be beating your door down for you glaucoma prescription and taking your guns away, but they could under ther law.

  6. Davei_Boi says:

    “If passed, the States Reform Act would let states — not the federal government”, why? Make it legal under federal law.

  7. Tigranes says:

    Setting the trap for the Democrats. They can not support a popular bill proposed by a Republicans, but if they fight it they alienate their base. If it passes both houses, Brandon’s decision to sign or veto will be a no win scenario.

  8. RayK216 says:

    3% LOL you’re dreaming, more like 30%.
    In CO non medical is taxed as such:
    “Retail marijuana is subject to a 15 percent sales tax, levied on retail sales, and a 15 percent excise tax, levied on the first transfer of marijuana from a wholesaler to a processor or retailer.”

  9. noktirnal.rambler420 says:

    An FFL can’t sell to an unlawful marijuana user or a marijuana addict.
    I’m unaware of a prohibition on a lawful, non-addict user of marijuana owning a gun or purchasing a gun.

  10. Wolv256 says:

    We also need to allow marijuana users to own a gun. This 100% needs to be resolved.

  11. Ambrossia188 says:

    A pot person?! Excuse me?
    You just misgendered me and I am offended!
    It’s POTHEAD thank you very much!


  12. Ambrossia188 says:

    Would be nice to see some bipartisanship on something. Perhaps once again the Peace pipe shall be passed…

  13. Sdonna63 says:

    So they figured out way to make money off it. 3% tax. One way or another they get paid.

  14. ChetF says:

    The pot issue is basically over. As usual republicans are late to the party. Maybe this gets them some bonus points but i kind of doubt it.

  15. MassSkeptic says:

    I’m not a pot person, don’t really care, but when it came up for a vote in Massachusetts I vote for legalization. Since then it’s never been a problem. I think it’s time to start rolling back the ‘war on drugs’.

  16. Rexwagon says:

    GOP is terrible at politics at this point. Why not do this before the last election? Have Trump sign off. Etc. But besides that. We have everything that unconstitutional Joe throwing at the citizens and this is the only thing the GOP has done this past year?

  17. a73s says:

    I think their proposal doesn’t go too far enough! All drug laws are unconditional, they had to change the constitution for alcohol prohibition, so why wouldn’t they have to do it for other drugs.

  18. Devilsgun says:

    Excellent. Now abolish the ATF

  19. JeDalton says:

    This is actually very interesting. I would like to see the exact wording and language of the bill and have a contrary lawyer or contributor, such as Ben Shapiro or Rikieta Law, so we can have it broken from a legal language to more common parlance, but it would be very exciting to see this end. It gives the (R)s more states rights and the (D)s less rigidity inside moral frameworks. It also gives the people something we have been begging for, an end to marijuana prohibition.

  20. FAAFO says:

    Regardless of what the states do with it, power shifting from the Fed to the states is a-ok in my book. We need more of this.

  21. VannicWolf says:

    Support your local dealer until the state can meet or rather BEAT the street price. And NO DRUG TEST should screen for it!