Opinion: Senate parliamentarian may have foiled cannabis legalization plan

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There has been some discussion over the past couple of months that Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer might employ some clever finagling to bypass the 60-vote supermajority requirement to push through a comprehensive cannabis reform bill. As it stands, an old rule known as the filibuster is in the way of Schumer securing the votes necessary to make legal weed a reality. But if he could wrap it up in a budget reconciliation proposal, there’s a chance it would pass with a simple majority. The budget reconciliation process allows the Senate to pass bills with a simple majority (51 votes), basically moving a bill through the upper chamber without Republican support. This is how they passed President Joe Biden’s US$1.9 trillion COVID-relief bill, despite Republican warning about how it would cripple the U.S. Chuck Schumer’s Senate Balancing Act Could Impact Marijuana Reform What the United States can learn from Canada’s cannabis clarity Top Democratic Senators say draft of cannabis reform measures will be released in “the early part of this year” The problem with that approach, however, is that the controlling party can typically only use it once per fiscal year. But Schumer, leaning on Section 304 of the 1974 Congressional Budget Act , believed Democrats had additional budget reconciliations coming to them. And if that was the case, he might try to include a long-awaited marijuana reform proposal into another resolution. In a recent press conference, Schumer admitted that was possible. He told reporters that he’d confirm in a few weeks. The next move seemed contingent on a ruling by the Senate parliamentarian, Elizabeth MacDonough. Democrats soon received good news. In April, the Senate parliamentarian determined that the party did, in fact, have additional budget reconciliation options at its disposal. “The Parliamentarian has advised that a revised budget resolution…

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Source : Opinion: Senate parliamentarian may have foiled cannabis legalization plan

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