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Wes Moore pardoning 175,000 marijuana convictions in Maryland

Gov. Wes Moore (D-MD) is set to pardon more than 175,000 marijuana convictions in Maryland on Monday, less than two years after voters elected to legalize recreational marijuana in the state.

Moore’s actions on Monday will pardon more than 150,000 simple possession of cannabis convictions, with the intent of helping those convicted of low-level criminal offenses related to the drug.

“The Moore-Miller Administration is committed to promoting social equity and ensuring the fair and equitable administration of justice,” the governor’s office said. “Because the use and possession of cannabis is no longer illegal in the state, Marylanders should not continue to face barriers to housing, employment, or educational opportunities based on convictions for conduct that is no longer illegal.”

The governor’s office says that roughly 25% of the pardons will be from Baltimore and that none of the actions on Monday will result in anyone being released from incarceration.

The state docket for those receiving the pardon will be updated within two weeks of the action by Moore. Moore told the Washington Post that his action on Monday will be part of his efforts to remove barriers for black and brown people.

“I’m ecstatic that we have a real opportunity with what I’m signing to right a lot of historical wrongs,” Moore told the outlet. “If you want to be able to create inclusive economic growth, it means you have to start removing these barriers that continue to disproportionately sit on communities of color.”

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER

Maryland voters elected overwhelmingly to legalize recreational marijuana in 2022, at the same time they elected Moore to the governorship, making the drug legal beginning on July 1, 2023.

President Joe Biden took action to pardon all those arrested, prosecuted, or convicted on federal charges for marijuana use late last year and encouraged governors to do the same.

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