Marijuana banking ‘unlikely’ to pass Republican House, GOP senator says

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The latest Congressional leadership crisis means the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is “unlikely” to take up marijuana banking reform, a GOP senator believes.

Speaking to investment podcast The Dales Report about the SAFER Banking Act, Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky predicted that GOP House Speaker Mike Johnson – whose grip on the gavel is weakening thanks to another far-right revolt – won’t want to risk further alienating his caucus.

And that’s if Congress can find the time amid other more pressing business to consider marijuana banking reform.

All that, Paul believes, is “unlikely.”

“I mean, look – they’ve having trouble bringing up spending bills,” he said.

“The speakership is dependent on not bringing up things a majority of Republicans don’t want.”

Paul said that only a “minority” of Republicans support marijuana banking.

“And so, I think if I were in the speaker’s shoes, would I say, ‘Wow, do I need another headache?’

“I think the logistics of it are real difficult right now.”

Paul faulted Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer for not calling marijuana banking reform for a floor vote when Democrats held both houses of Congress.

Whether protections for banks offering services to state-regulated marijuana companies would have passed then is far from clear.

Earlier versions of SAFER Banking passed a Democratic-controlled Congress only to stall out in the Senate, where 60 votes are needed to pass major legislation.

Congress’ familiar stalemate has led some in the cannabis industry to refocus instead on the Biden administration’s marijuana rescheduling efforts.