Forbes: This is the Most Cannabis-Friendly Congress We’ve Ever Had
Never before have we had a U.S. Congress more open to cannabis than we do right now.
That’s according to Forbes, which has called the 116th U.S. Congress the most cannabis-friendly in U.S. history.
NORML Political Director Justin Strekal agrees.
“Congress has never moved this far, this fast on marijuana policy, period,” he said.
As Forbes notes, “seven months into the session, there have already been seven hearings on cannabis, a marijuana banking bill passed a key committee and the full House adopted a far-reaching amendment to block federal interference in state legalization laws. And those are just the highlights.”
The publication cites a number of specific examples. Here are just a few:
- A 267 to 165 vote in the House this June to prevent DOJ resources from being used to intervene in state marijuana laws
- A House vote in favor of prohibiting penalties against banks that do business with state-legal cannabis enterprises
- A House vote in favor of ending a Veterans Affairs policy that denies home loans to vets in the cannabis industry
- A March vote by the House Financial Services Committee to approve a bill allowing banks to service marijuana businesses without being penalized by federal regulators
Of course, the Democratic takeover of the house in November has impacted Congress's stance on marijuana policy significantly. But the 115th Congress had some wins for cannabis too, most notably with the 2018 Farm Bill which legalized hemp cultivation.