The U.S. Department of Justice is accepting applications for pardons for individuals convicted or charged with marijuana possession in federal or District of Columbia courts. In a move that could signal the Biden administration's commitment to a federal rearrangement of marijuana, Friday's announcement is the latest tangible move by the Biden administration on marijuana policy reform, following a series of nearly unprecedented friendly public statements on marijuana. on March 1, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland told a Senate committee that the Justice Department is federally "(reviewing) marijuana policy." Garland's Senate appearance came just days after Biden highlighted amnesty in a speech for Black History Month, specifically mentioning racial inequality in marijuana arrests. Congressional leaders such as Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer have tried to put more ambitious marijuana reform measures on Biden's desk, including banking reform, but so far have been unable to overcome the partisan gridlock.
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