In my previous post Are The Republicans Waking Up?, I discussed how U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), convinced President Trump to sign a Federal cannabis legalization bill.

Senator Gardner is talking about the progress he has made. When asked if he thought Trump would be true to his word he had this to say.

I do believe he will be true to his word, and certainly has over the last several weeks since the agreement was entered into remained true to that word. His commitment was reconfirmed multiple times by the White House legislative director, Marc Short, as well as Sarah Huckabee Sanders during the live press briefing carried on national television. This is something the president has agreed to. I believe he will hold to his end of the bargain. And I believe we will also be able to work together on a federalist-based approach to resolve the conflict between federal and state law.


Unfortunately he is not planning to deschedule cannabis. He is writing a law to “fix” a law. So yeah. The fix is in. Still. I’ll take it. And very soon want more.

Sen. Gardner has a few words about the bill he is writing.

Republican U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner plans to introduce a bill with Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren that would finally legitimize Colorado’s marijuana industry, potentially opening up banking and a host of other legal protections for licensed businesses.

Gardner told CPR News he hopes this will be a breakthrough on everything from the threat of federal prosecutions to marijuana banking to IRS tax deductions problems. Under the proposal, states would not be forced to allow marijuana, but states such as Colorado that have approved sales will be federally legal.

So far there is no definite time table for completing the drafting (grafting) and introduction of the bill. I have seen anything from a week to a couple of months mentioned.

Update: 10 May 2018 1219z

The Bill now has a name. Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Entrusting States (STATES) Act. Clever those politicians, eh? The Bill needs Republican support so I guess the writers of the Bill have a point.

The bill, which Gardner could file in partnership with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and other senators as soon as this week, will be called the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Entrusting States (STATES) Act.

The legislation amends the Controlled Substances Act to exempt state-legal marijuana activity from its provisions, with a few carve-outs such as prohibiting marijuana distribution at rest areas and truck stops. It also does not allow access to marijuana for people under age 21, except for medical purposes.

Additionally, the bill “clearly states that compliant [financial and banking] transactions are not trafficking and do not result in proceeds of an unlawful transaction,” according to an overview obtained by Marijuana Moment. And, it amends the federal definition of marijuana to exclude industrial hemp.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is sponsoring a stand alone hemp bill. Obviously that has a good chance of passing.