Virginia House passes bill to repeal drug-related mandatory minimums

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Virginia House of Delegates passed a bill to repeal mandatory minimum sentences on drug charges on Friday.

“Mandatory minimums are a relic of the failed War on Drugs. We cannot incarcerate our way out of addiction. It’s past time for us to do away with these arbitrary sentences,” said Del. Mike Mullin, (D-Newport News), who introduced HB 2331.

The bill which removes mandatory minimums mostly related to the possession of narcotics passed on a vote of 58-42. 

In July, Virginia’s decriminalized the possession of marijuana went into effect. Then in December the House of Representatives passed a bill decriminalizing it on a federal level.

Earlier today, the Virginia House also passed a bill legalizing marijuana for people 21 years and older in a 55-42 vote. The senate will vote on this issue later this afternoon as well. If passed and signed into law by the governor, Virginia will become the first state in the south to legalize the recreational use of cannabis.

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