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U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services releases policy guidance; Rep. Earl Blumenauer reacts.

FILE PHOTO - A marijuana plant is shown here. Federal immigration officials say that immigrants involved with cannabis may be denied citizenship — even in states like Oregon, where marijuana is legal.

The new "policy guidance" released Friday, April 19 by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services states that participation with pot remains a factor when establishing "good moral character," a long-standing criterion for citizenship.

"An applicant who is involved in certain marijuana related activities may lack [good moral character] if found to have violated federal law, even if such activity is not unlawful under applicable state or foreign laws," according to the policy decision.

U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Oregon, told a reporter from OPB that the guidance "should not be allowed to stand."

"We will work to change that legislatively and, in the meantime, everybody needs to add their voice to this outrageous policy," the congressman continued.

Blumenauer has introduced a bill this session that would legalize marijuana on the federal level, where it is classified as a Schedule I drug.

OPB is a news partner of the Portland Tribune.

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