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July 16, 2019

Oregon politician’s marijuana bill fittingly titled S. 420

February 10, 2019
Oegon Senator Ron Wyden introduced a bill on Friday to decriminalize marijuana and allow for it to be taxed and regulated. The bill is titled S. 420, in a reference to marijuana culture. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Even amid political gridlock and partisan animosity, Congress can still have a little fun.

Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden introduced a bill on Friday — fittingly titled S. 420 — that would decriminalize marijuana and allow for the crop to be taxed and regulated, reported CBS News.

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The term “420” is drug slang for smoking pot.

The proposal’s goal is to ease conflict between states where marijuana is legal and the government, which still labels weed as a dangerous drug.

Numerous politicians claim it’s more of a criminal justice issue, as African-Americans are considerably more likely to be busted for pot-related charges than whites.

“The federal prohibition of marijuana is wrong, plain and simple, Wyden said in a statement. “Too many lives have been wasted, and too many economic opportunities have been missed.”

The bill would likely have an uphill climb in a Republican-controlled Senate.

The Democratic House majority is seemingly more open to considering proposals to ease federal restrictions on marijuana and the House has an upcoming hearing on a bill intended to make banking services more widely available for marijuana companies.

A similar proposal previously died in both chambers, but Oregon Democrat, Rep. Earl Blumenauer, said voters have “elected the most pro-cannabis Congress in American history.”

Media Relations Director for the National Cannabis Industry Association Morgan Fox told CBS News, “It’s tough to see how things will shake out, but there is a very serious chance cannabis policy reform will move in the Senate.”

The American Civil Liberties Union estimates that about half of all drug arrests are for marijuana possession.

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