Schumer on 4/20: Bill coming to end federal marijuana prohibition

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on Tuesday that a group of senators working on legislation to end the federal prohibition on marijuana is aiming to have draft legislation “in the near future.”

Schumer discussed the legislation that he’s working on with Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) from the Senate floor on Tuesday, which he referred to as “what you might call a very unofficial American holiday, 4/20.”

“Senators Booker, Wyden and I are going to continue to work on our legislation and in the near future we hope to have a draft of a comprehensive reform effort,” Schumer said.

He added that the forthcoming bill would end the federal prohibition but also “ensure restorative justice, protect public health and implement responsible taxes and regulations.”

“It’s time for change. I believe the time has come to end the federal prohibition on marijuana in this country,” he said. 

Schumer, who said his own thinking had “evolved,” pointed to changes to state marijuana laws across the country, including in his home state of New York, which officially legalized recreational marijuana for adults. 

Schumer vowed earlier this month  that he would move marijuana legislation even if President Biden wasn’t on board. He told Politico in an interview that he wanted to give Biden “a little time to study it … but at some point we’re going to move forward, period.” 

The bill faces an uphill path to passing the Senate because it would need 60 votes to overcome the filibuster. 

The House passed a separate bill this week that would allow banks and financial institutions to work with cannabis businesses.

Tags 4/20 Chuck Schumer Cory Booker Joe Biden Marijuana laws Ron Wyden

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