Joe Biden pardons all those convicted of marijuana possession

He announced it as part of a request for reform in the laws that regulate drug policies. What is his project about?

The president of United States, Joe Bidenannounced this Thursday that will pardon all those convicted of possession of marijuana. He did it as part of a decriminalization project that seeks to reform drug laws, a month before the mid-term legislative elections.

“I am announcing a pardon for all prior federal offenses for simple possession of marijuana,” Biden said in a statement, questioning “a misguided approach” to the issue of drug use.

“As I said during my campaign for President, no one should be in jail just for possession of marijuana. Sending these people to prison has upended too many lives and put them in jail for conduct that multiple states no longer prohibit,” Biden explained. .

He explained that “crime records” also pose “unnecessary barriers to employment, housing, or educational opportunities.” In addition, he pointed to the racial issue: “While white people, black people, and brown people use marijuana at similar rates, blacks and brown people are arrested, prosecuted, and locked up at disproportionate rates.”

A demonstration for the legalization of marijuana, in Washington. Photo REUTERS/Gary Cameron/Files

“My action,” he said of pardoning prisoners for marijuana possession, “will help alleviate the collateral consequences that arise from those lockdowns.” According to CNNofficial sources affirm that there are no Americans in prison for the only crime of simple possession of marijuana.

Senior US officials estimate there are about 6,500 people convicted of marijuana possession, with another 1,000 in the District of Columbia. However, most convictions occur at the state level. Therefore, as part of your “three step ad”, Biden urged the governors to extend clemency.

The reform promoted by Biden in the drug law

Third, Biden asked the Ministry of Health and the Attorney General’s Office to initiate an administrative process to “expeditiously review” the treatment of marijuana in federal law.

The Controlled Substances Act of 1970 places marijuana in Schedule I, which includes the substances considered most dangerous.

Joe Biden at a campaign appearance, ahead of the November 2020 election. AP Photo

Joe Biden at a campaign appearance, ahead of the November 2020 election. AP Photo

“It’s the same treatment as heroin and LSD, and it’s an even higher rating than fentanyl and methamphetamine, the drugs driving the overdose epidemic,” Biden added. He also assured that he will maintain “important limitations on traffic, marketing and sale to minors.”

“Too many lives have suffered from our misguided approach to marijuana. It’s time we correct those mistakes,” the note concluded.

A campaign promise and a claim still in force

Joe Biden’s announcement comes a month before the midterm elections, which will renew all 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 35 seats in the Senate. It is also the realization of a old campaign promise before the elections that consecrated him president, in November 2020.

Some sectors judge that the measure taken by the US president has the flavor of shortly before the demands for the legalization of marijuana. as collected CNNa 2020 Gallup poll found that 68% of Americans were in favor of legalizing drugs for recreational use.

A person smokes marijuana in Seattle.  Legalization is a claim from a sector of American society.  AP Photo

A person smokes marijuana in Seattle. Legalization is a claim from a sector of American society. AP Photo

Biden’s approach instead points to decriminalization.

“No one should go to jail for using a drug. They should go to drug rehab,” he said earlier this year. In his view, the sentencing system “should be changed to one that focuses on securing” rehabilitation plans.

In any case, this Thursday’s announcement is the beginning of the realization of his campaign promise, which took longer than necessary due to the rejection of a part of Congress.


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