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Schumer Circulates Petition To Demand Federal Legalization As He Works To Advance Banking Bill

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As Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) works to advance a bipartisan marijuana banking bill, he’s also calling on supporters to join him in demanding that the federal government legalize marijuana.

In a campaign email blast this week, the senator said “it’s time to legalize marijuana nationwide” and asked supporters to add their name and contact information to an online petition promoting an end to cannabis prohibition.

The sign-on form, which is a common tactic used to build a political campaign’s email and fundraising list, notes that “over 40 percent of Americans live in states where marijuana is legalized—both red states and blue states—and support for marijuana legalization is overwhelming, no matter your party.”

“Sign on to demand that the federal government end the prohibition of marijuana,” it says.

Schumer’s email blast that directs to the form adds that there’s “absolutely no reason marijuana should be criminalized on the federal level.”

“And by legalizing marijuana nationwide, we can reinvest tax revenue into communities most impacted by the failed War on Drugs and fund efforts to expunge prior marijuana convictions,” it says. “It’s long past time to end the federal prohibition of marijuana.”

Schumer has previously leveraged his support for marijuana legalization in campaign fundraising blasts, including in 2021 when he touted the issue as a Democratic legislative priority.

So far this session, no marijuana legalization bill has been filed on the Senate side this session, though Schumer did previously champion a comprehensive reform bill that ultimately did not advance during the last Congress.

Meanwhile, a bill to legalize, tax and regulate cannabis was filed by House Democrats on Wednesday. However, its prospects are dubious given GOP Schumer Circulates Petition To Demand Federal Legalization As He Works To Advance Banking Billcontrol of the chamber.

While all-encompassing legalization may be a long-shot under the current Congress, advocates and stakeholders are increasingly hopeful about a bipartisan marijuana banking bill Schumer is also championing and which is due for a Senate Banking Committee markup next week before potentially moving to the floor.

Schumer reaffirmed his commitment to expeditiously advancing the Secure and Fair Enforcement Regulation (SAFER) Banking Act on Wednesday—and he says he will also push to attach legislation on cannabis expungements and gun rights for marijuana consumers.

At the same time, the lead GOP Senate sponsor of the SAFER Banking Act is now planning to introduce new legislation to prevent marijuana from being federally legalized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) without congressional approval.


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