Warren: If Democrats take Senate, they'll vote on marijuana bill

Warren: If Democrats take Senate, they'll vote on marijuana bill
© Anna Moneymaker

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenColbert links large 2020 Dem field to Avengers: 'A group of every available person in the universe' Seven big decisions facing Biden in 2020 primary Sanders dominates, Buttigieg surges in 2020 social media battle MORE (D-Ma.) said she is confident that Democrats would vote on a marijuana bill that would allow states to regulate marijuana without federal interference should they retake the Senate in November.

"I feel confident that if the Democrats recapture the Senate we’ll get a vote on this, and the vote will carry," Warren said in an interview with Rolling Stone of the bipartisan bill, which Warren co-sponsored. "I think we’ve got the votes for this." 

Warren said she has been pushing Republicans to convince Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellElection agency limps into 2020 cycle The Hill's Morning Report - Will Joe Biden's unifying strategy work? Dems charge ahead on immigration MORE (R-Ky.) to relax his hard-line stance against the federal ban on marijuana. 

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The bill she is touting, the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act, has stalled in the House despite support from 10 senators from both parties and 28 members of the House. 

"We’ve got plenty of colleagues on the Democratic side who will support this, and Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpForget the spin: Five unrefuted Mueller Report revelations Lara Trump: Merkel admitting migrants 'one of the worst things that ever happened to Germany' Financial satisfaction hits record high: survey MORE said it sounded like a good idea to him," Warren said. "He’s said it, I think, three different times now. So I’m pretty hopeful that if we could get a vote in Congress that we could actually get this passed."

Warren, a progressive who has been floated as a possible 2020 presidential contender, introduced the bill alongside Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerCongress can open financial institutions to legal cannabis industry with SAFE Banking Act Dem super PAC campaign urges Republicans to back impeachment On The Money: Cain withdraws from Fed consideration | Says he didn't want 'pay cut' | Trump sues to block subpoena for financial records | Dems plot next move in Trump tax-return battle MORE (R-Colo.). 

"We've been bringing people on to our bill two by two, a little like Noah’s Ark," she said. "A Democrat and a Republican join hands and become cosponsors on our bill. We now have multiple cosponsors [in the Senate]. We have lots on the House side. In other words, we have a lot of people on McConnell’s team who are pushing McConnell to do this." 

The bill would amend the Controlled Substances Act to say it no longer applies to laws “relating to the manufacture, production, possession, distribution, dispensation, administration, or delivery of [marijuana]."

The Trump administration so far has taken a stance against marijuana legalization, with Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsForget the spin: Five unrefuted Mueller Report revelations Sessions: It's time to accept the results of the Mueller report and move on Trump poised to roll back transgender health protections MORE, a legalization opponent, at the helm of the Justice Department.

Warren said his staunch opposition has mobilized Congress in favor of marijuana.

"Let me describe it this way: We are in a moment when Jeff Sessions highlighted aggressive law enforcement on marijuana and a lot of folks here in Congress looked at each other and said, ‘That’s a bad idea,’ " Warren said. "What Cory [Gardener] and I have done is give them a place to channel that where we can make real change. Now we just need to get a vote from Mitch [McConnell]."

Though marijuana is illegal at the federal level, recreational marijuana is legal in nine states and Washington, D.C., and medical marijuana is legal in another 29.

Democrats will face long odds in taking back the Senate, according to most political analysts.