Congressman Predicts The U.S. Will Never ever Elect Yet another ‘Anti-Cannabis’ President


Immediately after 4 decades of fighting for marijuana reform at the state and federal levels, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) is riding higher as cannabis legislation gains momentum in the Residence.

Final week, he and Rep. David Joyce (R-OH) reintroduced a bill that would shield legal marijuana states from federal intervention. It is one particular of a number of pieces of legislation that Blumenauer integrated in a congressional “blueprint” to legalization that he hopes to attain in the 116th Congress.

So far, issues are seeking excellent. Advocates can currently count one particular congressional accomplishment this year: a Residence committee authorized legislation to deliver banking access for cannabis organizations, and that bill is awaiting placement on the calendar for a complete Residence vote.

The momentum signals that lawmakers are starting to recognize the political realities surrounding prohibition—namely, that supporting the ongoing criminalization of cannabis is a losing tactic. And that reality extends up to the White Residence, also, Blumenauer told Marijuana Moment in a telephone interview.

“I do not feel there will ever be a different president who will be anti-cannabis. It will not occur,” the congressman mentioned. “Either the Republicans or the Democrats. It is some thing that is supported overwhelmingly by the American public, it is supported by a majority of Republicans and Democrats. It ain’t going to occur.”

What does that imply for former Vice President Joe Biden, who is anticipated to launch a run for the 2020 Democratic nomination and has an in depth history of supporting punitive, anti-drug legislation?

“Nobody is going to survive the nominating procedure who does not have a affordable position on cannabis,” Blumenauer mentioned when asked particularly about Biden’s anti-legalization record. “They will not be nominated. I say that unequivocally.”

For the duration of the interview final Wednesday, the congressman spoke optimistically about the probabilities of passing extensive cannabis reform this Congress. But he also mentioned it was critical to give skeptics time to digest the legislation and to address their inquiries and issues. It is “going to take a small a lot more time placing these pieces collectively,” but the Democratic-controlled Residence is positioned to get it carried out.

In the middle of the telephone interview, for the duration of which Blumenauer seemed to be riding a bike, he hit the breaks as he passed by his colleague Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), who is a Senate sponsor of the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment By way of Entrusting States (STATES) Act that the two had been scheduled to file the subsequent day.

“Rolling it out tomorrow,” Blumenauer could be heard saying.

“We’re gonna get it carried out,” Gardner replied.

Even though the congressman operates to push marijuana reform more than the objective line on Capitol Hill, some activists in his state of Oregon are turning their focus to a different substance: psilocybin, the active ingredient in psychedelic mushrooms. A campaign to legalize the substance for health-related purposes and otherwise decriminalize it is collecting signatures in the hopes of receiving the measure on the state’s 2020 ballot.

Asked whether or not he’d provided any believed to reforming laws governing psychedelics, Blumenauer mentioned he is “focusing on ending the failed policy of prohibition of cannabis,” although he also feels “strongly that we want to finish the failed war on drugs” commonly.

“That’s not a campaign that I am functioning on,” he mentioned. “I’m committed to receiving this job carried out very first and then receiving a Congress that is rational.”

Passing restorative justice legislation that rights the wrongs of marijuana prohibition is one particular of his “other greater priorities” prior to providing consideration to decriminalizing psilocybin.

“Those are ones that I feel are a lot more critical in the brief-term, but people today can do what they want to do,” Blumenauer mentioned. “I respect people today who have distinctive priorities, it just does not occur to be mine.”

Lawmakers Roll Out ‘Landmark’ Bill To Defend Legal Marijuana States From Federal Interference

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