A bipartisan group of House members urged Congress on Thursday to stay out of the way of building momentum toward marijuana legalization in states around the country.
Joining Democratic representatives from Alaska, Oregon and the District of Columbia, which all passed ballot initiatives last week legalizing the use of recreational marijuana by adults, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) called upon GOP lawmakers to honor the will of voters.
“The fundamental principles are individual liberties, which Republicans have always talked about; limited government, which Republicans have always talked about; doctor-patient relationships, which of course we’ve been stressing a lot about lately; and of course, states’ rights and the 10th Amendment,” he said.
The House has already passed measures to cut funding for Drug Enforcement Agency raids on medical marijuana operations and prohibit the Treasury Department from penalizing banks that service dispensaries.
“I’m confident in the new Congress with new members, we’ll have an even stronger working majority when we have test votes on these subjects.” Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) said.
To date, 23 states have approved medical marijuana, 18 states have decriminalized it and four states and the District of Columbia have legalized adult recreational use.