Congress Moves To Legalize Marijuana In Washington, D.C.

The nation’s capital of Washington, D.C. legalized marijuana in 2014 — but only in a tiny and modest way. In what was essentially a decriminalization measure, the district legalized possession and the home cultivation of a few plants.

But full legalization, with legal sales, operating dispensaries, and taxation, may be on Washington D.C.’s horizon. Marijuana Movement reports that Washington, D.C. may legalize marijuana under a bill currently being considered by the U.S. Congress.

The bill is called the 2018 Financial Services & General Government Appropriations Bill and was introduced by Thad Cochran (R-MS), the chair of the congressional Appropriations Committee.

That appropriation bill funds various federal agencies and dictates appropriations to the District of Columbia government. Ironically, the bill does not mention marijuana in any way. But a previous rider specifically banned marijuana sales in the District of Columbia, and the absence of such a ban in this bill would clear the way for cannabis sales.

Still, a majority of the House of Representatives remains staunchly opposed to D.C. legalization. Their version of the bill, passed in September, continues the previous rider’s ban and contains language that goes even further to prohibit legal cannabis sales in D.C.

Cochran attempted the exact same maneuver in 2015 by excluding the D.C marijuana ban language in that year’s appropriations bill, but the House of Representatives overrode him by inserting the ban into their version of the bill.

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