With Economy Reeling from Virus, Congress Looks to Marijuana for Help


The coronavirus pandemic has been awful in a myriad of ways that can’t be summed up in a tidy little package.  This was an enormous, oppressive issues that squeezed humanity for months on end, and, even with a number of vaccines now on the way, COVID-19 is giving us another hearty throttling.

And while the impact of the virus on the the nation’s health and morale has been bad enough, we are on the verge of the next big wave of economic catastrophe, as unemployment benefits remain stagnant and a moratorium on evictions is set to expire.

Without a massive economic blossoming, our nation could be in for a rough ride.

Good thing Congress has just such an opportunity before them as we speak.

This week the U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote on a bill that would remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and require federal courts to expunge many prior marijuana offenses. It will be the first time the full House will vote on ending the federal prohibition of cannabis.

Morgan Fox with the National Cannabis Industry Association says House passage would “send a really strong message to not only the rest of Congress, but to a lot of other states that the time to end prohibition has come.”

The Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act (MORE Act), introduced by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D., N.Y.), would eliminate conflict between state and federal law and allow states to set their own marijuana policies.

“We don’t need to have one size fits all. We just need to get rid of prohibition and then let the states do what the states are doing. It’s essentially what the states have done already. They haven’t waited for the federal government, which is why we have a lot of these discrepancies and challenges,” said Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D., Ore.), who has long pushed for marijuana legalization.

And while there are still some apprehensions to the legalization of the drug on a moral level, it should be noted that none of the 30-some states in the nation who’ve legalized or decriminalized cannabis have appeared to regret the decision.