Last month President Donald Trump said he supported a bill proposed by Senators Cory Gardner and Elizabeth Warren that would protect states with legalized marijuana. But apparently he forgot to tell Republicans in Congress.
Republican congressional leaders indicated they have no plans to hold hearings or introduce the bill to protect legalized marijuana states for a vote. In fact, it's not only Republicans who don't support the bill. Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer also doesn't support the bill.
So it seems the bill, called the STATES Act, may be dead.
Some experts say that simply introducing the bill into Congress sent a strong enough message. They believe that showing the bill has support from both parties, and even President Donald Trump, that it may be enough to discourage Attorney General Jeff Sessions from enacting anymore anti-marijuana policies.
But at the same time, this also shows that even if a bill has support from both parties, as long as Republican leadership doesn't want it to pass, then that will stay the case.
The question is how will supporters of the bill handle its rejection. Senator Cory Gardner previously refused to allow any Department of Justice nominees receive confirmation until Sessions re-instated the Cole Memo, an Obama-era policy protecting states with legal marijuana. Gardner only stopped blocking nominees after he received assurance from Donald Trump that he would support this bill.
Will Gardner continue fighting for legalized marijuana? Or will he back down and return to supporting the party line?
If anything, this simply indicates that even if a bill has support from both parties, as long as Republicans control Congress, we should not expect any pro-cannabis legislation to become law.