Press Release

Senators Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Protect State Marijuana Laws

Jun 07, 2018

Senators Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Protect State Marijuana Laws

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Contact: Violet Cavendish

Statement below from the Marijuana Policy Project, the nation's largest marijuana policy organization

WASHINGTON — Sens. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced bipartisan legislation Thursday that would end the federal government’s war on marijuana and protect states’ rights to enact their own marijuana policies.

In April, Gardner said President Donald Trump “assured [him] that he will support a federalism-based legislative solution to fix this states’ rights issue once and for all.”

The Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act would reportedly amend the Controlled Substances Act to exempt marijuana-related activities conducted in accordance with state, territory, or tribal laws. It would also protect banks that work with marijuana businesses and legalize the cultivation of industrial hemp.

Statement from Don Murphy, conservative outreach director for the Marijuana Policy Project:

“The STATES Act is the most significant piece of marijuana-related legislation ever introduced in Congress. With its bipartisan backing in the Senate, it symbolically signals the eventual end of marijuana prohibition at the federal level. This legislation reflects the position President Trump took on marijuana policy during his campaign, and it comes shortly on the heels of the positive comments he made to Sen. Gardner. The president has a unique opportunity to get behind historic legislation that enjoys solid support on both sides of the political spectrum.

“While we look forward to the day when there is full acceptance of cannabis at the federal level, we heartily embrace the states’ rights approach proposed by this bill. As an organization, we have been at the forefront of changing state marijuana laws for more than 20 years. It is time for those laws to be respected by and protected from the federal government.

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Founded in 1995, the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) is the nation’s leading cannabis policy reform organization. MPP has played a central role in passing dozens of cannabis policy reforms in states across the country, including 14 successful cannabis legalization campaigns, and also works to advance federal reforms.

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