3 Democratic presidential candidates and the party’s best Senate leader are taking the stand that Congress must not pass marijuana banking legislation with out also moving to finish federal cannabis prohibition and repair the harms of the war on drugs.
All 4 lawmakers—Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY)—tweeted hyperlinks to Marijuana Moment coverage of a increasing dispute involving legalization supporters who say the banking bill is a initially step that will bolster broader cannabis reform and these who are concerned that passing the restricted proposal will undermine efforts to advance additional far-reaching legislation.
Property leadership announced on Friday that the first complete floor vote on a standalone piece of cannabis reform legislation—a bill to guard banks that service cannabis companies from getting penalized by federal regulators—will be held on Wednesday.
The scheduling of the vote came more than the objections of a number of advocacy groups—including ACLU, Human Rights Watch and Drug Policy Alliance—that wrote a letter asking that the vote be postponed until additional wide-ranging reform legislation is passed.
“I am proud to stand with these civil rights organizations,” Sanders mentioned in his tweet on Saturday. “In the fight for marijuana legalization, we ought to prioritize racial and financial justice—that suggests revenues from this market ought to be invested in the communities that have been devastated by the so-named ‘war on drugs.’”
I am proud to stand with these civil rights organizations. In the fight for marijuana legalization, we ought to prioritize racial and financial justice—that suggests revenues from this market ought to be invested in the communities that have been devastated by the so-named “war on drugs.” https://t.co/5IGh53QI7j
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) September 21, 2019
“We shouldn’t do this with out addressing the reality that men and women of colour are getting shut out of the legal marijuana market,” Harris wrote in her Saturday Twitter post. “That suggests not only legalizing marijuana but also expunging criminal records and offering a path for men and women of colour to enter the market.”
I agree. We shouldn’t do this with out addressing the reality that men and women of colour are getting shut out of the legal marijuana market.
That suggests not only legalizing marijuana but also expunging criminal records and offering a path for men and women of colour to enter the market. https://t.co/M1Ri1iDKra
— Kamala Harris (@SenKamalaHarris) September 21, 2019
On Friday, Booker tweeted that “marijuana legislation moving by way of Congress ought to consist of restorative justice for these most harmed by the War on Drugs” in order to get his vote.
Despite the fact that the senator didn’t straight reference the banking bill in his post, his press secretary confirmed to Marijuana Moment in an e-mail that the tweet was sent straight in reaction to the Property banking vote news.
As I mentioned earlier this year, any marijuana legislation moving by way of Congress ought to consist of restorative justice for these most harmed by the War on Drugs in order to get my vote.https://t.co/Y1dOwgHbm2
— Sen. Cory Booker (@SenBooker) September 20, 2019
On Thursday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), the best Democrat in the physique, tweeted that “we require decriminalization at the federal level, criminal justice reform, and investment in chance for minority & females-owned modest companies,” adding that groups who say there can be no movement on banking with out broader justice reform are “right.”
.@RepAOC and these civil rights groups are proper.
Congress must not enact banking reform alone and assume the job is accomplished.
We require decriminalization at the federal level, criminal justice reform, and investment in chance for minority & females-owned modest companies. https://t.co/PM22Bmk5Pl
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) September 19, 2019
Although it is not specifically clear that all 4 Democrats would vote against a marijuana banking bill must it come to the Senate floor prior to additional far-reaching cannabis reform—and Harris and Sanders are cosponsors of the monetary solutions legislation—their tweets come at a critical time in the debate about the situation, and could be interpreted by Property Democrats who share their issues as a signal that it would be OK for them to oppose the restricted reform when it comes up for floor consideration this week.
To that finish, Schumer’s tweet described Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), who earlier on Thursday indicated she agrees with the groups’ issues and may well vote against the banking bill if the chamber does not initially tackle social equity difficulties.
“She feels strongly that addressing racial justice must be the initially priority,” a staffer for the congresswoman told Marijuana Moment.
The Property plans to advance the proposal beneath an expedited process recognized as suspension of the guidelines, by way of which a two-thirds majority—or 290 votes—is necessary to pass. Whilst the bill at the moment has 206 cosponsors and has been anticipated to bring in the super majority of votes necessary to advance, opposition from progressive lawmakers like Ocasio-Cortez could potentially jeopardize passage.
Groups signing the letter of concern to Property leadership told Marijuana Moment they are not positive irrespective of whether they will ask lawmakers to vote against the banking legislation now that their issues on timing have been rejected, but some mentioned they are nevertheless pushing to convince the physique to delay consideration.
Probably anticipating some liberal defections, Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), the chief sponsor of the Safe and Fair Enforcement (Protected) Banking Act moved final week to amend the legislation in an try to bring in even additional GOP votes—including clarifying that banking protections would apply to hemp and CBD businesses and also adding language stopping monetary regulators from targeting specific industries such as firearms dealers and payday lenders as getting at a larger threat for fraud.
Even ahead of Senate Democrats started publicly expressing their issues about the restricted reform, the banking bill was believed to face a tougher road in the chamber, exactly where Schumer’s counterpart, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), shepherded hemp legalization to enactment final year but usually says he does not assistance the crop’s “illicit cousin” marijuana.
But Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo (R-ID) shocked observers when he mentioned this month that he planned a vote on cannabis banking legislation in his panel by the finish of the year.
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, one particular of the groups that signed the letter calling on Property leaders to pull the planned banking vote, thanked Schumer and Sanders for their tweets.
— The Leadership Conference (@civilrightsorg) September 20, 2019
Thanks, @SenSanders. We agree.
For decades, men and women of colour have suffered beneath harsh and racially biased marijuana laws. We require broad and additional inclusive efforts to reform them. https://t.co/OXz6iHDhQb
— The Leadership Conference (@civilrightsorg) September 21, 2019
The groups want Congress to initially move legislation such as the Marijuana Chance Reinvestment and Expungement Act, which Harris and Property Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) introduced in July. That bill would take away cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act and fund applications aimed at undoing the previous harm of the drug war.
Bernie Sanders Talks Marijuana With Killer Mike, Danny Glover And Ben & Jerry’s Founder
Photo courtesy of Jurassic Blueberries.