Lawmakers, Advocates And Stakeholders React To Biden’s Marijuana Rescheduling Announcement

Marijuana Moment

The Biden administration’s announcement about its formal move to reschedule marijuana has elicited another round of applause from lawmakers, industry stakeholders and advocacy groups.

While the Justice Department already confirmed two weeks ago that it would be moving to place cannabis in Schedule III, rather than Schedule I, of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), President Joe Biden officially announced the action on Thursday. And Attorney General Merrick Garland has now initiated the formal rulemaking process.

Rescheduling marijuana wouldn’t federally legalize it—a point that certain advocates are quick to point out, especially in light of Biden’s 2020 campaign pledge to decriminalize cannabis. But it would have major implications for state-licensed marijuana businesses, while opening up expanded research opportunities.

But the action is being largely praised as a historic step in the right direction, with the federal government recognizing for the first time in over 50 years that cannabis has accepted medical value and a lower abuse potential than other drugs in Schedule I such as heroin.

Here’s how people are reacting to the marijuana rescheduling announcement: 

Lawmakers and Public Officials

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR)

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR)

“It’s official, the Biden administration has taken a historic step toward ending reefer madness and bringing commonsense to federal cannabis policy,” Wyden said. “Now it’s time to follow the lead of 24 states and more than half the country by decriminalizing and putting in place smart federal regulations. Leader Schumer, Senator Booker and I have the bill to do it.”