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The Personal Use of Marijuana by Responsible Adults Act of 2008 is a bill in the United States House of Representatives introduced by Barney Frank (D-MAmarker) on April 17, 2008 as . Its passage would eliminate federal criminal penalties for possession of up to and nonprofit transfer of up to an ounce of cannabis under the Controlled Substances Act. It does not change the regulation on the manufacturing or the sale of cannabis. It is the first bill of its kind to be introduced at the federal level in the U.S. since 1984. As of April 24, 2008, HR 5843 has 5 cosponsors including support upon introduction by 2008 U.S. presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-TXmarker).

The Bill incorporates the basic recommendations of the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse (also known as the Shafer Commission). The commission published its findings in 1972 and recommended that then-president Richard Nixon decriminalize possession of marijuana in amounts that constituted "simple possession."

The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), and the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) had a large hand in the formation of bill, working closely with Rep. Frank. The bill also as mentioned earlier relied heavily also on information and advice from the federally-funded National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse.

Rep. Frank says that it's time “for the politicians to catch up with the public on this. The notion that you lock people up for smoking marijuana is pretty silly."





  • Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) David Murray

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