Cannabis News of Note for the Week:
Politico Pro Cannabis (12/11): Lawmakers Look to 2024 for Cannabis Banking (paywalled newsletter, text below)
Cannabis Reports of Note for the Week:
Politico Pro Cannabis (12/11): LAWMAKERS LOOK TO 2024 FOR CANNABIS BANKING
The cannabis banking bill is dead for 2023, concedes Montana Sen. Steve Daines, a key Republican backer of the long-stalled legislation. But a bipartisan group of lawmakers across both chambers is forging ahead with negotiations to potentially pave the way for passage next year.
Staff-level meetings occurred as recently as last week, according to a half-dozen lawmakers and staffers whom POLITICO spoke with. But whether the cannabis banking bill will ultimately prove to be the Little Engine That Could or a sequel to “Groundhog Day” remains to be seen.
Republican conflict: Republicans in the House are divided on whether changes approved by Senate Republicans are acceptable. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.) said in November that some of the Senate’s changes were absurd — like a portion of the text that left more enforcement discretion in the hands of regulators than he and some other Republicans were comfortable with. “Oh, my Lord, that absolutely, positively can’t happen,” he said.
The fact that the Senate did not loop in House Republicans earlier on changes has exacerbated the policy argument in a building where egos are sizable and not making the right people feel involved in negotiations can doom a bill.
Trying to corral those egos is the bill’s House sponsor, Rep. Dave Joyce (R-Ohio). An ally of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy and leader in the moderate Republican Problem Solvers Caucus, Joyce took a more diplomatic approach to the Senate’s changes.
“I think certainly Senator Daines and Senator Sinema have been working very closely and cooperatively and effectively to try to bring something to the resolution to try to get it through the Senate,” Joyce said. “Our position has been to wait and see what passes the Senate.”