Senate Opens Doors to Federal Legalization
By Morgan Fox
July 14, 2021

Senate Opens Doors to Federal Legalization

At long last, the day we’ve been waiting for all year has finally come! Early Wednesday morning, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) released the discussion draft language for a comprehensive bill that would effectively make cannabis legal at the federal level while allowing states to continue to determine their own cannabis policies and work to repair the harms caused by prohibition.

While it has yet to be formally introduced in the Senate (stay tuned!), this draft legislation is designed to jumpstart bipartisan negotiations that have been building momentum in Congress since the first states chose to regulate cannabis for adults, and which came to the forefront in the wake of last year’s renewed focus on criminal justice reform and the House passage of the MORE Act at the end of the last congressional session.

You can find a summary of the language here and the full draft here.

NCIA will be carefully reviewing the details of this proposed legislation in the coming days and will be actively eliciting feedback from our members, allies, and especially our Evergreen members, Policy Council, and committees to determine what – if any – changes need to be made before the bill is introduced. Our dedicated in-house government relations team will also be working closely with lawmakers to find an effective path forward for comprehensive cannabis policy reform that helps to undo the disastrous impacts of our current federal laws in the immediate future.

Senate leadership will be taking comments and suggestions until September 1. If you would like to add your input, please contact Deputy Director of Government Relations Michelle Rutter Friberg at

Even With So Much Progress, We Must Remain Diligent

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