Less than a day after Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) along with Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced draft legislation that would decriminalize marijuana at the federal level, Schumer expanded on his dedication to reforming how the United States approaches the legal use of the medicinal plant.
“I am the first majority leader to say it’s time to end the federal prohibition on marijuana and as majority leader, I’m going to push this issue forward and make it a priority for the Senate,” Schumer said in remarks to reporters on Thursday as reported by The Hill, promising to deliver “monumental change” toward national drug policies.
“At long last,” the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act “would take steps to right the wrongs of the failed war on drugs,” Schumer said.
Marijuana is currently classified as a Schedule I narcotic under the Controlled Substances Act of 1971. The Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act would remove the plant from the CSA and levy federal taxes on the sale of recreational weed.
It also contains provisions for boosting the blossoming commercial marijuana industry – which presently is worth tens of billions of dollars per year and growing – as well as acknowledgments pertaining to the failures of the war on drugs.
Schumer noted on Wednesday that “it makes eminent sense to legalize marijuana,” adding that “a number of states, including my own of New York, just legalized recently. The doom and gloom predictions haven’t materialized in any of these states. And as more and more states legalize marijuana, it’s time for our federal cannabis law to catch up.”
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Brandon is a political writer for the Hill Reporter specializing in current events, breaking news, and scientific discovery. Brandon holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University. He lives in New York City.