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senate Bill S. 1028

Should Marijuana be Regulated by States & Not Available to Individuals Under Age 21?

Argument in favor

This commonsense, bipartisan bill ensures that each state is able to use its rights under the Tenth Amendment to regulate marijuana while preventing marijuana from being sold to people under 21 years of age or at transportation safety facilities like rest areas or truck stops.

jimK's Opinion
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08/18/2019
This is a common sense approach to bringing some background structure to support existing state marijuana laws regarding interstate commerce, legitimate banking, financing the business aspects of this new taxable revenue source as well as removing some of the seemingly ‘prohibition-like’ federal classifications and restrictions- without overstepping Republican sponsored states rights. Nice job, Elizabeth Warren! .. .. Also a great political move; if Moscow Mitch buries this legislation- it will be squarely on him and his legion of lemmings.
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Wendy's Opinion
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08/18/2019
Yea except one thing. Medical marijuana should be available to children with a valid prescription. There are many medical uses and it would be a shame to remove that option. (If there already was a provision for medical use i didnt see it)
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Robert 's Opinion
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08/18/2019
Yes. Decriminalize it at the federal level. Legalize it at the state level for recreational use over 21, any age for medical use. Allow a small quantity for growing your own. Criminalize impairment not presence. Impairment testing technology is on the way. Empty out the jails and prisons and expunge records of those convicted of pot laws.
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Argument opposed

The federal government shouldn't allow states to normalize the use of marijuana, which is a dangerous gateway drug. It needs to enforce laws designed to protect the public health. Alternatively, marijuana should be available to adults age 18 and up.

Aaron's Opinion
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08/18/2019
The federal government should legalize marijuana
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IllWill's Opinion
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08/18/2019
Just legalize it entirely! Also, it should be available to adults 18 and up! If you’re old enough to join the military then you’re old enough to buy cannabis.
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Bob's Opinion
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08/19/2019
Plants should not be regulated by anyone, and any adult who wants to buy, sell, or use them in any way should be free to do so.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on the Judiciary
    IntroducedApril 4th, 2019

What is Senate Bill S. 1028?

This bill — known as the STATES Act — would allow states, territories, the District of Columbia, and federally recognized tribes to regulate marijuana as they see fit. It would prohibit the sale or distribution of marijuana to individuals under the age of 21 or at transportation safety facilities (like rest areas or truck stops). Additionally, it would clarify that compliant marijuana-related financial transactions don’t constitute trafficking, thus enabling marijuana businesses to access banking services.

The bill would remove industrial hemp from the Controlled Substances Act’s list of controlled substances. The Controlled Substances Act’s prohibitions on endangering human life while manufacturing marijuana and employing individuals under age 18 in drug operations would be maintained.

The bill’s full title is the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States Act.

Impact

Individuals who would use marijuana; states, territories, tribes, and the District of Columbia; and the federal government.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 1028

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to ensure that each state has the right to determine for itself the best approach to marijuana within its borders

“Our federal marijuana laws are outdated and pose a threat to our public health and safety. Marijuana should be legalized, and we must reverse the harm of these failed policies by wiping clean the records of those unjustly jailed for minor marijuana crimes. Congress should take immediate action on these important issues by passing the bipartisan STATES Act and protecting states, territories, and tribal nations as they implement their own marijuana laws without federal interference.”

When she introduced this bill in the 115th Congress, Sen. Warren framed it as an effort to protect states’ rights to legalize and regulate marijuana:

“Outdated federal marijuana laws have perpetuated our broken criminal justice system, created barriers to research, and hindered economic development. States like Massachusetts have put a lot of work into implementing common sense marijuana regulations -- and they have the right to enforce their own marijuana policies. The federal government needs to get out of the business of outlawing marijuana.”

Last Congress, original cosponsor Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) added:

“In 2012, Coloradans legalized marijuana at the ballot box and the state created an apparatus to regulate the legal marijuana industry. But because of the one-size-fits-all federal prohibition, state decisions like this put Colorado and other states at odds with the federal government. The federal government is closing its eyes and plugging its ears while 46 states have acted. The bipartisan STATES Act fixes this problem once and for all by taking a states’ rights approach to the legal marijuana question. The bipartisan, commonsense bill ensures the federal government will respect the will of the voters -- whether that is legalization or prohibition -- and not interfere in any states’ legal marijuana industry.”

During a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing in April 2019, Attorney General William Barr expressed support for this bill over the status quo, while still expressing a preference for a uniform federal rule against marijuana:

“Personally, I would still favor one uniform federal rule against marijuana, but if there is no sufficient consensus to obtain that, then I think the way to go is to permit a more federal approach so states can make their own decisions within the framework of federal law, so we’re not just ignoring the enforcement of federal law.”

The National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) and American Bankers Association (ABA) support this bill. NCAI's president, Jefferson Keel, says that marijuana federalism would benefit tribes
"The National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) strongly advocates for the recognition of tribal sovereignty and inclusion of tribal governments in national legislation. We appreciate the re-introduction of the STATES Act, which would bring certainty in federal law for tribal nations as separate jurisdictions. Tribal nations, as sovereign governments, and in the spirit of self-determination, must be able to make independent  decisions about their own economic, cultural, and social futures at the local, tribal level.”
“While ABA does not take a position on the legalization of cannabis and the STATES Act is not a banking specific bill, removing the federal prohibition on cannabis in states that have legalized its use would allow banks to accept deposits and provide basic financial services to state licensed cannabis businesses and their service providers. That, in turn, would help those communities reduce cash-motivated crimes, increase the efficiency of tax collections, and improve the financial transparency of the cannabis industry."

President Trump expressed his support for this bill in the 115th Congress. However, Janet Seiberg, an analyst at Cowen Washington Research Group, cast doubt on how much the president's endorsement would matter to this bill's odds of passage, saying, "Despite the president's remarks, we don't see the White House fighting for this legislation."

Senate Majority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has expressed his opposition to marijuana legalization in any form, despite introducing a hemp legalization bill in the 115th Congress. At that time, Sen. McConnell drew a distinction between hemp and marijuana, saying, "I do not have any plans to endorse the legalization of marijuana... [Hemp] is a different plant. It has an illicit cousin which I choose not to embrace."

This bill has nine bipartisan Senate cosponsors, including five Republicans and four Democrats. A House version, sponsored by Rep. Earl Blumenauer with the support of 27 bipartisan cosponsors, including 14 Republicans and 13 Democrats, has also been introduced in the current Congress.

Last Congress, this bill had the support of 10 bipartisan cosponsors, including five Democrats and five Republicans. Aside from Gardner, the Republican cosponsors included Sens. Rand Paul (KY), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Dan Sullivan (AK). Democratic cosponsors included Sens. Catherine Cortez Masto (NV), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Cory Booker (NJ), and Michael Bennet (CO). It didn't receive a committee vote.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: nastasic / iStock)

AKA

Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States Act

Official Title

A bill to amend the Controlled Substances Act to provide for a new rule regarding the application of the Act to marihuana, and for other purposes.

    This is a common sense approach to bringing some background structure to support existing state marijuana laws regarding interstate commerce, legitimate banking, financing the business aspects of this new taxable revenue source as well as removing some of the seemingly ‘prohibition-like’ federal classifications and restrictions- without overstepping Republican sponsored states rights. Nice job, Elizabeth Warren! .. .. Also a great political move; if Moscow Mitch buries this legislation- it will be squarely on him and his legion of lemmings.
    Like (80)
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    The federal government should legalize marijuana
    Like (44)
    Follow
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    Yea except one thing. Medical marijuana should be available to children with a valid prescription. There are many medical uses and it would be a shame to remove that option. (If there already was a provision for medical use i didnt see it)
    Like (73)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes. Decriminalize it at the federal level. Legalize it at the state level for recreational use over 21, any age for medical use. Allow a small quantity for growing your own. Criminalize impairment not presence. Impairment testing technology is on the way. Empty out the jails and prisons and expunge records of those convicted of pot laws.
    Like (59)
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    Marijuana needs to be declassified as a scheduled 1 narcotic federally which still allows the federal government to stick their noses into states ability to self-regulate this useful medicinal product.
    Like (29)
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    This bill dissolves the discord between state’s laws and federal laws on marijuana and enforces states rights to autonomy on this issue. Additionally, it adds common sense regulations and access to banking services which will only further strengthens safety issues, and enforcement of those issues, regarding legalization of marijuana in states that want this. I urge you to vote yes.
    Like (24)
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    The old white racists will die soon and the progressives will fix this ShitShow AND save the environment! Time will run out for our planet if we lose in 2020! VOTE THESE DINOSAURS THE FUCK OUT!
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    Just legalize it entirely! Also, it should be available to adults 18 and up! If you’re old enough to join the military then you’re old enough to buy cannabis.
    Like (22)
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    I do agree teenagers who have a prescription should be allowed and maybe younger if the doctor can show it would prevent a opioid addiction
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    YES. YES. YES. NOT available to those under 21 because of the medicinal properties. There hasn’t been enough research to tell what they might cause in the developing brain because of the Republicans scaring everyone about a medical plant. Probably because BIG PHARMA paying them to make it illegal. Definitely we need a FEDERAL LAW TO DECRIMINALIZE it, BUT States should control it unless they put people in jail for possessing it & using it. That must be part of the decriminalization.
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    This hopefully includes total federal legalization of all hemp products. It’s time to go petrochemical free.
    Like (9)
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    Agreed!! Medical marijuana should be allowed as a prescription for minors!
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    Whatever it takes to legalize and decriminalize. Marijuana is NOT a gateway drug. Conservatism oppression is a gateway drug. Conservative oppression is the root cause of any person seeking a solution to their misery, depression and stress.
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    Plants should not be regulated by anyone, and any adult who wants to buy, sell, or use them in any way should be free to do so.
    Like (7)
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    Marijuana is a racist word used to demonize a plant. No one ever had the right to outlaw cannabis. That’s why we can’t trust the government. Law makers think they’re progressive when the consider legalization. Pat your selves on the back if you also think slavery was wrong. You leaches just don’t get it.
    Like (7)
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    Recreational cannabis should be for 21 and over, but medical cannabis is just that- medicine, and must be available to all.
    Like (7)
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    Marijuana should be regulated by states. It should be available to anyone 18 and over, because that is the age of legal majority.
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    All this progress with marijuana is worthless if we aren’t also releasing all the non-violent people in prison for weed crimes. We can regulate and tax marijuana all day long, but unless we also include everyone’s participation, it is just another tool of white supremacy. Do what’s right on this.
    Like (7)
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    Yes!! Need to decriminalize the sale of marijuana and let each state set the tone. And it should not be sold to anyone under 21 just like alcohol!
    Like (6)
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    Yes I think it’s way past time for that, I think it’s been going on in the White House since Trump walked in. How else could you explain his crazy behavior? Unless he really is crazy!
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