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Dem says marijuana banking bill will get House vote this spring

Dem says marijuana banking bill will get House vote this spring
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Rep. Earl BlumenauerEarl BlumenauerInauguration parties lose the glitz and glamour in 2021 Four things Democrats should do in Biden's first 100 days House Republican wants restrictions on masks with messages MORE (D-Ore.) said Friday that the House will vote later this spring on legislation allowing banks to work with marijuana businesses in certain states.

Blumenauer, who has long pushed cannabis legislation in Congress, said he has been in touch with Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOn The Money: Reddit traders cause Wall Street havoc | Powell: Inflation fears should not impede more coronavirus aid | NJ lawmakers press for SALT cap repeal in next relief package Pelosi asks Democrats to 'write their stories' of Capitol riot Bringing America back from the brink MORE (D-Calif.) on timing for the bill, which was approved by the House Financial Services Committee in a 45-15 vote last month.

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“Nancy Pelosi has always been supportive of cannabis reform,” he told reporters on a call. “There’s no doubt in my mind what is coming out of the Financial Services Committee will be given the opportunity to proceed to the floor in regular order.” 

When asked about timing for the bill, Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill noted the strong bipartisan vote in committee and that conversations would continue as the panel's work wraps up.

The bill is expected to pass the House if it receives a vote, but it faces less-than-certain prospects in the GOP-controlled Senate.

Blumenauer acknowledged on Friday that bipartisan support for the bill in the Senate is “not quite as robust as the situation in the House.”

“The situation in the Senate is more fluid. I’m not quite as optimistic but I’m not pessimistic about movement in the Senate,” he said. “We find more people who are outspoken in support of it.”

He noted that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHouse Democrat touts resolution to expel Marjorie Taylor Greene from Congress Bringing America back from the brink Senate GOP slow walking Biden's pick to lead DHS MORE (R-Ky.) played a key role in legislation of hemp. He also spoke about another prominent Republican in the cannabis community: former Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerCan the GOP break its addiction to show biz? House conservatives plot to oust Liz Cheney Ex-Speaker Boehner after Capitol violence: 'The GOP must awaken' MORE (R-Ohio).

BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerCan the GOP break its addiction to show biz? House conservatives plot to oust Liz Cheney Ex-Speaker Boehner after Capitol violence: 'The GOP must awaken' MORE has worked as a marijuana advocate and sits on the board of the cannabis corporation Acreage Holdings, which owns legalized marijuana licenses in several states. He also is honorary chairman of the National Cannabis Roundtable, an organization to lobby for pro-marijuana policy.

The promotion by Blumenauer comes a day before April 20, or 4/20, which refers to the date and time –– 4:20 p.m. –– when cannabis users consume marijuana to celebrate the cannabis culture.

Blumenauer said that when he talked to Boehner about supporting cannabis after leaving Congress, the former Speaker said he had evolved on the issue.

“There are other people who are evolving on the cannabis issue,” Blumenauer said.