Schumer unveils bill to decriminalize marijuana

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerDemocrats detail new strategy to pressure McConnell on election security bills Democrats detail new strategy to pressure McConnell on election security bills Ex-state senator in North Carolina enters race against Tillis MORE (D-N.Y.) has introduced legislation to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level.

The Marijuana Freedom and Opportunity Act removes marijuana from the list of scheduled substances under the 1970 Controlled Substances Act, allowing states to decide how to handle marijuana possession, according to a statement from Schumer’s office.

“The time to decriminalize marijuana is now,” Schumer said.

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The bill, introduced Wednesday, would preserve the federal government’s ability to prevent trafficking from states where it would be legal to states where it is not, the statement said.

The legislation would also invest $500 million over the span of five years to the Department of Health and Human Services for medical marijuana research and understanding the effects of THC.

Under the bill, states would be allowed to seal or expunge individual marijuana possession records.

Schumer said in a statement that the legislation is “simply the right thing to do.”

The bill is co-sponsored by Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersFive takeaways from Trump's 2020 kickoff rally Five takeaways from Trump's 2020 kickoff rally Sanders tears into Trump in response to campaign kickoff rally MORE (I-Vt.), Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineOvernight Defense: Shanahan exit shocks Washington | Pentagon left rudderless | Lawmakers want answers on Mideast troop deployment | Senate could vote on Saudi arms deal this week | Pompeo says Trump doesn't want war with Iran Senators demand Trump explain decision to deploy troops amid Iran tensions Senators demand Trump explain decision to deploy troops amid Iran tensions MORE (D-Va.) and Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthOvernight Defense: US to send 1K more troops to Mideast amid Iran tensions | Iran threatens to break limit on uranium production in 10 days | US accuses Iran of 'nuclear blackmail' | Details on key defense bill amendments Overnight Defense: US to send 1K more troops to Mideast amid Iran tensions | Iran threatens to break limit on uranium production in 10 days | US accuses Iran of 'nuclear blackmail' | Details on key defense bill amendments Senators revive effort to create McCain human rights commission MORE (D-Ill.).

Attorney General Jeff Session told The Hill earlier this month that he hasn’t talked to President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP senator introduces bill to hold online platforms liable for political bias Rubio responds to journalist who called it 'strange' to see him at Trump rally Rubio responds to journalist who called it 'strange' to see him at Trump rally MORE about legislation to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level but believes the president would support a bill that protected states that do so.