The U.S House Judiciary Committee has approved a bill legalizing marijuana on the federal level, removing it from schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act.
The legislation, which passed 24 to 10, has a high chance of approval in the House where Democrats control the chamber with 234 seats.
The legislation allows states to enact their own policies and gives them incentives to clear criminal records of people with low-level marijuana offenses. It also includes a 5% tax on cannabis products that would provide job training and legal assistance to those hit hardest by the war on drugs.
The landmark bill marks the first time a congressional committee has passed a bill in favor of legalizing marijuana at the federal level. It will still need to pass the full House before moving to the Senate where it’s likely to stall.