Sensi: Congress Will Pass Legalization Bills Next Year, Lawmakers Say

Leland Rucker is the senior editor at Sensi Magazine and he joins us on Thursday mornings at 8.20am to talk about the latest news in cannabis.



It won’t come this year, but the next United States Congress is likely to pass cannabis legislation, two congressmen, Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and David Joyce (R-Ohio), said during a recent Cannabis Law Institute conference.

Though neither sees changes on a federal level this year, both say that momentum is moving in the right direction on the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States Act, which would exempt states with legal cannabis laws from federal cannabis law enforcement.

Neither thinks anything will happen until after the midterm elections, but both agreed that political momentum and public support will force change after that. “The public is fed up,” said Blumenauer, who co-founded the Congressional Cannabis Caucus. “Cannabis is going to be a significant issue in dozens of races around the country.”

The STATES Act and other cannabis-related legislation will likely pass no matter which political party controls Congress next year, both lawmakers said, citing increasing public support for medical cannabis, and decreasing fear among politicians about the negative consequences of being pro-cannabis.

Both think that even if Republicans gain control, things will change. If Democrats are in control after November, bills now lost in committee will go the floor for votes. Any measures addressing medical legalization should be easily passed, Joyce said. “Given the opportunity in the next Congress, they will do what they need to do for their communities.”