Weekly Cannabis Roundup April 16
Note: Veriheal does not support or endorse any political candidate or their policies. We merely report on the facts as they are presented and their implications in regards to cannabis.
The US House of Representatives voted on and passed the 2020 MORE Act (Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act) with a 228-164 vote, but this doesn’t mean the bill was passed. Instead, it has set the stage for federal cannabis legalization in 2021, a showdown between democrats and republicans. Ass and elephant aside, many people thought cannabis was legal when they heard the House had passed the MORE Act. Sadly, this is not the case.
After hearing of this news, many Americans felt the MORE Act was just “MORE Acting” by America’s political leaders. How long can the United States Federal Government oppose the people’s will and continue to support draconian prohibition in what is supposed to be a democracy? The people have spoken. This is evident by the number of states in our country that have gone against federal government laws to legalize cannabis. An even better question to ask is, how long will the American people allow a misguided government to dominate their lives regarding cannabis legalization?
America is on the brink of a financial collapse, with the economic impact of Covid-19 being felt by everyone across the country. In February of 2020, America’s unemployment rate was sitting at around 3.5%, according to government stats. As of the first week of December, America’s unemployment rate has doubled to approximately 6.7-6.9%. Our government is stuck in a debate about another round of stimulus checks. States like Kansas and many others are continually cutting education programs and taking money from them to fund other areas lacking in funds like highway departments. Meanwhile, America is missing out on the chance to jump into the global cannabis trade community.
Now that we know the House has passed the MORE Act, what’s next? What was the GOP (Grand Old Party, a traditional term for the Republican party) response to this, and what is the outlook for the Senate vote? These are some of the questions Americans are left asking. What is clear is that times are changing and some of our government is beginning to listen to the people. To help get a solid answer to what’s next for the MORE Act, I reached out to a group on the frontlines of this topic, NORML to get a quote on the passing of the MORE Act. The Deputy Director of NORML, Paul Armentano promptly replied back saying,
“The MORE Act removes the cannabis plant from the federal Controlled Substances Act — thereby eliminating the existing conflict between state and federal marijuana laws and providing states with the authority to establish their own cannabis laws free from undue federal interference. This vote is historic because it marks the first time in 50 years that a chamber of Congress has ever revisited the classification of cannabis as a federally controlled and prohibited substance and it marks the first time in 24 years — when California became the first state in the nation to opt-out of marijuana prohibition — that a chamber of Congress has ever sought to close the widening chasm between state and federal marijuana policies. By going on the record with this vote, House members have set the stage for a much-needed legislative showdown in 2021 when we will have the Biden administration in office — one that has publicly expressed an appetite for advancing the restorative justice remedies outlined in the MORE Act. We are primed and ready for this legislative debate and we expect, ultimately, to win it.”
The House approved the MORE Act, but many believe the bill will stall when it hits the republican controlled Senate according to what many media outlets are reporting. But is this the case? Ending the decades-old prohibition of cannabis and acknowledging the failed war on drugs is the “elephant in the room” for republicans of the Grand Old Party. Hopefully, the House vote in favor of the MORE Act will signify it’s time for a change. As Americans, we need to let the GOP know we mean business when it comes to our freedoms. It is no longer the place for the few to decide what is best for the rest of us. The people are not alone when it comes to feeling that the feds are behind the times when it comes to cannabis legalization.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., a sponsor of the bill, told the press, “Federal action on this issue would follow the growing recognition in the states that the status quo is unacceptable. Despite the federal government’s continuing criminalization of marijuana, 36 states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical cannabis. Fifteen states and the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis for adult recreational use.”
The day the vote was passed, Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., tweeted, “Today, the House passed the MORE Act which would, decriminalize marijuana, expunge non-violent federal marijuana convictions, and more. 47 states have reformed their laws regarding marijuana possession and usage. It’s time the federal government joined them.
Today, the House passed the MORE Act which would, decriminalize marijuana, expunge non-violent federal marijuana convictions, and more.
47 states have reformed their laws regarding marijuana possession and usage.
It’s time the federal government joined them.
— James E. Clyburn (@WhipClyburn) December 4, 2020
The people are starting to make their voices heard by the Grand Old Party. Let’s not stop until we achieve our goal and remove the negative impacts prohibition has made on America. There are so many more important topics that we need to focus on. We must collectively address the anti-cannabis GOP Elephant in the room, and put an end to prohibition. Power to the people!
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