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Revised Marijuana Research Bill Expected To Head To President’s Desk Soon, With Floor Action Planned Next Week

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A newly revised bipartisan marijuana research bill that was introduced in Congress on Thursday is being fast-tracked, with floor action on the legislation expected to happen next week before it is potentially sent to the president’s desk.

If things go according to plan, that would make the bill, which is nearly identical to an earlier Senate-passed measure, the first piece of standalone congressional marijuana reform legislation to reach the Oval Office. And while President Joe Biden has maintained a steadfast opposition to adult-use legalization, he’s expressed support for medical cannabis—and research in particular—so he’d be expected to sign.

The new text of the next bill is almost exactly the same as the Cannabidiol and Marihuana Research Expansion Act from Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) that the chamber approved in March, but with some minor changes.

Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Andy Harris (R-MD), who championed a separate cannabis research bill that cleared the House in April, are leading the newly revised measure in their chamber.

Unlike the House legislation, the newly introduced bill notably does not include a provision that scientists had welcomed that would have allowed researchers to access cannabis from state-legal dispensaries

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California Senator Gives Up Psychedelics Reform Push For 2022 After Bill Gutted By Key Committee

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A California senator announced on Friday that he will no longer pursue plans to enact his psychedelics reform bill this year after a key committee removed major provisions this week that would have legalized possession of substances like psilocybin, LSD, DMT and MDMA for people over the age of 21.

On Thursday, the Assembly Appropriations Committee advanced the Senate-passed legislation from Sen. Scott Wiener (D), but significantly scaled it back so it would merely direct state officials to conduct a study of potential future psychedelics policy reforms—taking out its main criminal justice provisions.

“I’ve now confirmed that SB 519—decriminalizing possession and use of small quantities of certain psychedelic drugs—was amended by the Assembly Appropriations Committee to remove the decriminalization aspect of the bill,” Wiener said in a press release. “As a result, the soon-to-be-amended version of SB 519 is limited to a study.”

“While I am extremely disappointed by this result, I am looking forward to reintroducing this legislation next year and continuing to make the case that it’s time to end the War on Drugs,” the lawmaker said. “Psychedelic drugs, which are not addictive, have incredible promise when it comes to mental health and addiction treatment. We are not

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Schumer Touts Senate Marijuana Research Bill Among ‘Historic Progress’ Under Biden As Legalization Measure Lingers

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As the midterm elections approach, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) would probably prefer to be able to tout progress on enacting marijuana legalization—but instead, he’s currently left with the Senate passage of a modest cannabis research bill as among “historic achievements” made during the Biden administration.

In a statement released on Thursday, the leader touted the “productive and bipartisan” work that the Senate has done under Democratic leadership.

“To even do small things in the Senate is tough,” he said. “To pass major pieces of bipartisan legislation in the longest evenly divided Senate in history is a testament to Democrats’ persistence and hard work to deliver for the American people.”

While the press statement largely focuses on touting major achievements such as the Inflation Reduction Act, and infrastructure bill and aid to Ukraine, among other more well-known pieces of legislation, it also includes mention of the cannabis study reform.

Under a section of the statement titled “Fighting Back Against Hate, Crime and Oppression,” Schumer briefly mentioned that the “Senate passed legislation to streamline research of marijuana,” referencing legislation from Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) that cleared the chamber in April.

Missing from the

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CA cannabis & psychedelics bills advance to floor votes (Newsletter: August 12, 2022)

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AR court puts marijuana on ballot (but votes might not count); GOP congressman “hopeful” on psychedelics; NY retail apps soon; MD cannabis ballot info

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

The Arkansas Supreme Court ordered the secretary of state to certify a marijuana legalization initiative for the November ballot while a legal challenge is pending. But depending on the outcome of the case, the votes on the measure may never be counted.

The California Senate and Assembly Appropriations Committees cleared major drug policy reforms for floor votes—including bills to allow interstate cannabis commerce and protect people from losing jobs for off-duty marijuana use—but a

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