18 House lawmakers urge softer pot policy

by Rebecca Shabad - The Hill  |  published on February 12, 2014

More than a dozen House lawmakers are urging President Obama to soften the federal government’s penalties for marijuana use.

In a letter on Wednesday, they ask Obama to direct Attorney General Eric Holder to scale back how the government punishes people for using the drug.

“We request that you instruct Attorney General Holder to delist or classify marijuana in a more appropriate way, at the very least eliminating it from Schedule I or II. Furthermore, one would hope that your Administration officials publicly reflect your views on this matter,” the letter says.

Marijuana is currently listed as Schedule I under the Controlled Substances Act, alongside drugs including LSD and heroin. The law determines how businesses pay federal taxes if they sell marijuana in states where pot is legal.

The Schedule I classification for marijuana is actually a higher listing than cocaine and methamphetamine, the lawmakers write in the letter.

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