A dozen members of the scientific advisory board to Smart Approaches to Marijuana ("SAM"), an organization opposed to marijuana legalization, are calling on Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) to schedule a vote on a cannabis research bill.
In a letter sent to Schumer, the group wants him to advance the Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act, which is bipartisan legislation that was passed in the House in July.
"This bill would streamline the process for research necessary to improve our understanding of marijuana and its effects on the human brain and body," the letter, obtained by Marijuana Moment, reads. "As existing research already shows, there are myriad potential harms and benefits to marijuana and its various compounds. But we need to have a greater understanding of exactly how marijuana affects its consumers."
In March, the Senate passed a similar marijuana research measure, the Cannabidiol and Marihuana Research Expansion Act, but as Marijuana Moment reported, it was later revised as part of a compromise with the House.
The SAM group, however, is pushing also for passage of the Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act.
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Whether Schumer follows SAM's request remains to be seen, but it may not be likely. The senator is a sponsor of a broad piece of marijuana reform, the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act. He might also want to see cannabis research included in another piece of legislation that is being floated in the Senate, SAFE Banking Plus, that would give legal cannabis companies access to the US banking system.