In this March 21, 2017 file photo, Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., center, joined by, from left, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., praises fellow Coloradan, Supreme Court Justice nominee Neil Gorsuch during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Sen. Cory Gardner tries to attach marijuana measure to criminal justice bill

Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colorado, made a move Monday toward changing federal marijuana law, including letting banks accept money from legal businesses.

The Yuma Republican introduced an amendment to the First Step Act, a criminal justice reform bill that’s expected to pass the Senate this week with bipartisan support.

Gardner’s amendment would amend the Controlled Substances Act to exempt people growing, selling and buying marijuana from federal prosecution in states where it’s legal. However, the amendment wouldn’t change marijuana’s classification a Schedule I drug, meaning it would remain illegal in states that haven’t legalized it for medical or recreational use. The amendment would also let federally insured banks accept money from marijuana businesses.

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