- Legalized marijuana took a step forward, as Mexico’s lower house voted to legalize the drug.
- The Mexican Senate is expected to next pass the marijuana bill.
- President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and his Morena party support the bill and control both houses of Congress.
MEXICO CITY, Mexico: Legalizing marijuana took a step forward this week, as Mexico’s lower house of Congress voted 316 to 127 to legalize the recreational use of the drug.
The Mexican Senate is expected to next pass the bill.
The Morena party of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador supports the bill and controls both houses of Congress.
“With this, the false belief that cannabis forms part of Mexico’s serious health problems is left behind,” said Simey Olvera, a member of the Morena party.
The bill calls for allowing people 18 years and over to use marijuana without fear of arrest. However, it will be required for anyone using marijuana to obtain a permit.
If signed into law, Mexico would join only a few countries that have legalized the use of marijuana.
Obrador also said the legalization of some drugs might reduce drug-related violence.
Authorities say more than 300,000 Mexicans have been killed since the Mexican army was deployed to fight drug cartels in 2006.