Biden announces official DOJ move to reschedule cannabis.


On Thursday, President Joe Biden took to X to announce his support of the Department of Justice’s move to reclassify cannabis.

“No one should be in jail just for using or possessing marijuana,” Biden said on his post. He has previously pardoned thousands for simple cannabis possession charges at the federal level. However, the pardons do not extend to state charges, clear people’s records or include individuals charged with intent to distribute or who are not U.S. citizens.

No one was released from prison after the President’s previous pardons.

Critics say that rescheduling cannabis instead of descheduling the plant is not enough. Cannabis will join the ranks of ketamine and Tylenol with codeine as a schedule III drug. It will continue to be a controlled substance treated like a prescription drug and regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Rescheduling could allow big pharmaceutical companies to gain more control over the industry. It also allows current cannabis companies to enjoy more tax breaks, no longer being barred from using 280E tax breaks. Researchers would also have more access to cannabis.

Adult use will remain illegal under this new classification, and people could still be charged with trafficking cannabis. Descheduling the plant, on the other hand, would have allowed it to be removed from the Controlled Substances Act and join the ranks of tobacco and alcohol.

This official announcement starts a 60 day public comment period after which a final rule will be proposed that will include the date the rescheduling goes into effect. This effective date can be no less than 30 days after the rule is published in the Federal Register.

Congress and the president could pass a resolution of disapproval to void the rule. Biden has supported rescheduling, so a resolution is unlikely to find congressional support.


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