Mexico’s Lower House Votes to Decriminalize Recreational, Medical, and Scientific Cannabis

The Mexican Chamber of Deputies has approved a bill to legalize marijuana nationwide for recreational, medical, and scientific purposes.

The bill had 316 votes in favor, 129 against, and 23 abstentions but there will be possible amendments to the legislation before it’s formally sent back to the Mexican Senate.

Mexican legislators voted to issue the Federal Law for the Regulation of Cannabis and made changes to the National General Health Law and the Federal Penal Code.

Dep. Arturo Hernandez Tapia said that the legalization of marijuana is a “historic opportunity to end decades of hypocritical and moralistic attitudes that restricted the freedom of people.”

Tapia added that prohibition demonstrates “unjustified paternalism and state perfectionism.”

The bill initially proposed that Mexicans 18 and older would be allowed to purchase and possess up to 28 grams of marijuana and cultivate up to six plants for personal use with accompanying permits. Revisions were made regarding regulatory structure, rules for the commercial market, and licensing policies, among other components.

Deputies also revised the bill to remove a proposed governing body for its use and gave authority to the pre-existing National Commission Against Addictions.

Sen. Ricardo Monreal of the MORENA party said that there would be “no problem if they modify the cannabis law, we have no problem,” as the bill headed for the Senate.

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