Kamala Harris Pledged a Joe Biden Administration Would Decriminalize Marijuana

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris said, if elected, she and presidential nominee Joe Biden would plan to decriminalize the use of marijuana. Harris outlined the proposal’s broad strokes during a virtual roundtable she hosted with ABC through Facebook Live on September 14.

“Under a Biden-Harris administration, we will decriminalize the use of marijuana and automatically expunge all marijuana-use convictions, and end incarceration for drug use alone,” Harris said. “This is no time … for half-steppin’, this is no time for incrementalism. We need to deal with the system, and there needs to be significant change in the design of the system.”

Over the course of her career as California’s former attorney general, and now senator, Harris’s own stance on cannabis has shifted considerably.

As reported by the Boston Globe in August, the former prosecutor was solidly against legalization in California as early as 2010, and as recently as 2014. Then, in 2019, she sponsored legislation that would federally deschedule cannabis, formally legalizing it at the federal level. (Individual states would still need to decriminalize or legalize following federal descheduling.) [Read more at TeenVogue]

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