Biden pardons thousands for ‘simple possession’ of marijuana

Biden
President Joe Biden boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022, to travel to Poughkeepsie, N.Y. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

By ZEKE MILLER
AP White House Correspondent

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Joe Biden is pardoning thousands of Americans convicted of “simple possession” of marijuana, as his administration takes a dramatic step toward decriminalizing the drug and addressing charging practices that disproportionately impact people of color.

He is also calling on governors to issue similar pardons for those convicted of state marijuana offenses, which reflect the vast majority of marijuana possession cases.

Biden says the move reflects his position that “no one should be in jail just for using or possessing marijuana.”

He says his action will ease the consequences for “people who have prior Federal convictions for marijuana possession, who may be denied employment, housing, or educational opportunities as a result.”

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