The Democratic-led U.S. House passed the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act Friday in what advocates called an “historic moment.”
In the 228-164 vote, just five Republican members and one independent joined the vast majority of Democrats in supporting the MORE Act (H.R. 3884), which if signed into law would remove marijuana from the Federal Controlled Substances Act and expunge many prior convictions for possession of the substance. Only six Democrats—Reps. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.), Henry Cuellar (D-Texas), Conor Lamb (D-Penn.), Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.), Chris Pappas (D-N.H.), and Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) voted against the bill.
“This is a historic day for marijuana policy in the United States,” said Justin Strekal, political director at the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). “This vote marks the first time in 50 years that a chamber of Congress has ever revisited the classification of cannabis as a federally prohibited substance and sought to close the rapidly widening chasm between state and federal marijuana policies.”