The marijuana legalization movement has a lot of friends in high places these days that were not always there for the cause. It goes without saying that, despite just how popular cannabis has become over the past few years, it was not always the opinion of those who write our laws in the United States that we should embrace the herb similar to alcohol and tobacco and allow it to become a part of legitimate society.
It was the Democrats that initially took the reins on this issue, fighting for it on Capitol Hill without any success. But them something bizarre started to happen. Republicans, a group staunchly opposed to legal weed since the dawn of time, started to come out of the pot closet. There are now more Republicans in Congress that support the cannabis movement in one way or another than ever before. The following is a list of those fighting to give the cannabis industry more rights to operate without antiquated federal controls.
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Representative Steve Stivers: Republican Representative from Ohio, where medical marijuana is now legal. He is a co-sponsor on a bill designed to give banks permission to do business with the cannabis industry. It is known as the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Cory Gardner: Republican Senator from Colorado, where marijuana is legal for both medical and recreational use. He supports bringing an end to federal marijuana prohibition and is considered one of the primary voices for the movement on the Hill.
Representative Rodney Davis: Republican Representative from Illinois, where marijuana is legal for both medical and recreational use. In addition to his support for the SAFE Banking Act, he has also cast several votes in favor of giving veterans access to medical marijuana.
Representative Duncan Hunter: Republican Representative from California, where marijuana is entirely legal. He is a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Mitch McConnell: Republican Senator from Kentucky. He hates marijuana (at least for now) but played a huge role in the legalization of industrial hemp production last year, giving the agricultural community, as well as the CBD sector a boost.
Representative Dan Newhouse: Republican Representative from Washington, where marijuana is legal for recreational use. He is a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act and has voted in favor of medical marijuana access for veterans.
Representative David P. Joyce: This Republican Representative from Ohio is the co-chair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, a group pushing for marijuana reform at the national level. He is a supporter of several marijuana legalization efforts, including the SAFE Banking Act and the Marijuana Data Collection Act.
Representative Don Young: Republican Representative from Alaska, where marijuana is legal for recreational use. He recently joined forces with Democrat Tulsi Gabbard to introduce the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2019. He is a state’s rights supporter and a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Matt Gaetz: Republican Representative from Florida, where medical marijuana is legal. He recently introduced the Medical Cannabis Research Act of 2019 because, he says, “we cannot reform cannabis law without researching its safety, its efficacy, and its medical uses.” He is also a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Kevin Cramer: Republican Senator from North Dakota, where medical marijuana was made legal by way of ballot initiative. He is part of a group working to give marijuana-related businesses access to comprehensive and affordable insurance coverage.
Representative Denver Riggleman: Republican Representative from Virginia, which has a medical marijuana program. He is a supporter of all things medical marijuana and eliminating prosecutions for petty pot offenses. He is also a co-sponsor of both the STATES Act and the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Lisa Murkowski: Republican Senator from Alaska. She believes states should be permitted to make their own rules when it comes to marijuana, and that financial services should be made available to the cannabis trade. She is presently a co-sponsor of the Secure And Fair Enforcement Banking Act of 2019.
Representative Mark Amodei: Republican Representative from Nevada, where marijuana is legal for adults 21 and over. He has called out the federal government for accepting tax money from the cannabis industry, all while refusing to legalize. He supports the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Troy Balderson: Republican Representative from Ohio. He is a supporter of medical marijuana. Balderson was part of the “yes” crew that legalized it for therapeutic purposes in his state in 2016. He is presently a co-sponsor for the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Tom McClintock: Republican Representative from California. He is all about keeping the federal government out of state marijuana business. And while he admits that he’s not a big fan of the substance, he doesn’t believe prohibition is working. He has supported medical marijuana legislation and is presently a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Chris Collins: Republican Representative from New York, where medical marijuana is legal. Co-sponsor of the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Rand Paul: Republican Senator from Kentucky. He is a huge supporter of medical marijuana. He has sponsored cannabis legislation from the CARERS Act to the STATES Act. He is also favor of eliminating policies that force pot offenders to be sent to prison.
Representative Gregory Steube: Republican Representative from Florida. He is a supporter of giving veterans access to medical marijuana. In fact, he introduced the Veterans Cannabis Use for Safe Healing Act, earlier this year, aimed at preventing Veterans Affairs from denying patients the use of medicinal cannabis in states where it is legal. He is also a supporter of the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Thomas Massie: Republican Representative from Kentucky, which has a restrictive low-THC medical marijuana program. He is a big supporter of eliminating policies that prevent medical marijuana cardholders from owning guns. Massie has championed legislation to remove the cannabis question on the ATF forms. He is also a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Dan Sullivan: Republican Senator from Alaska. Not always a supporter of marijuana reform, but advocates for state’s rights and cannabis research. He is also a co-sponsor of the Secure And Fair Enforcement Banking Act of 2019.
Representative Guy Reschenthaler: Republican Representative from Pennsylvania, where medical marijuana is legal. In addition to being a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act, he is also one for the Federal Clean Slate Act, which aims to seal the marijuana convictions of those involved in non-violent crimes.
Representative Fred Upton: Republican Representative from Michigan, where marijuana is completely legal. He has received a B rating from NORML with respect to his position on cannabis. Upton is a supporter of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus and co-sponsor of both of the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act and the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Jim Banks: Republican Representative from Indiana, which still locks people up for cannabis crimes. He is a co-sponsor on the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Daniel Meuser: A newbie Republican Representative from Pennsylvania. He believes veterans should have medical marijuana access. He is also a supporter of the SAFE Banking Act.
Senator Andy Barr: Republican Senator from Kentucky. He is pushing for industrial hemp and CBD companies to be given access to financial services.
Representative Kelly Armstrong: Republican Representative from North Dakota. He is a supporter of ending federal marijuana prohibition. Armstrong is a co-sponsor of the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Bob Gibbs: Republican Representative from Ohio. He has supported widespread medical marijuana legislation in the past, including the dusty CARERS Act. He is currently a co-sponsor of the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative James Comer: Republican Representative from Kentucky. He is a massive supporter of legalized hemp. He worked closely with Senate Majority Leader itch McConnell to include the legalization of industrial hemp on the 2018 Farm Bill. He also supports allowing cannabis operations to deposit cash, which is just one of the reasons he is presently a co-sponsor of the SAFE Baking Act.
Representative Tom Graves: Republican Representative from Georgia, where low-THC medical marijuana is legal. He is a co-sponsor of the SAFE Banking Act.
Representative Anthony Gonzalez: Newbie Republican Representative from Ohio. He has signed on in support of the SAFE Banking Act.