Rep. Aguilar Votes to Decriminalize Marijuana
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Aguilar today voted to pass the bipartisan Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act (H.R. 3617), legislation that will decriminalize marijuana at the federal level and clear prior marijuana-related federal convictions from criminal records. With the federal prohibition removed, California marijuana businesses that have operated for years will have greater certainty.
“For far too long, communities of color have been unfairly targeted for cannabis use,” said Rep. Aguilar. “Last year, legal cannabis sales in the US totaled $20 billion and are projected to reach $40.5 billion in the next four years. Federally decriminalizing cannabis is good for the economy, good for small business growth and good for our communities.”
The MORE Act requires federal courts to expunge prior marijuana-related convictions and arrests for non-violent marijuana offenders. Additionally, this bill opens Small Business Administration funding programs for cannabis-related businesses and ensures that legal use or possession of marijuana will have no negative impacts on immigration status.
The bill is supported by more than 130 organizations, including the NAACP, National Urban League, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, SEIU, National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), Drug Policy Alliance, ACLU, Human Rights Watch, Immigrant Defense Project, Immigrant Legal Resource Center, National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, National Association of Social Workers, National Organization for Women, Moms Rising and Veterans Cannabis Coalition.
H.R. 3617 passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 220-204.
Rep. Aguilar serves as the Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus.