An influential Republican senator on Wednesday said he doesn’t support a House-approved bill that aims to protect banks that work with the marijuana industry.
“I have significant concerns that the SAFE Banking Act does not address the high-level potency of marijuana, marketing tactics to children, lack of research on marijuana’s effects, and the need to prevent bad actors and cartels from using the banks to disguise ill-gotten cash to launder money into the financial system,” said Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo, in a statement.
“I welcome input from all interested parties on how to thoughtfully address these concerns,” added the Idaho Republican, who earlier this year sounded noncommittal on the measure.
The Democratic-controlled House passed the Secure And Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act in September, but analysts have stressed that the bill faces a tough road in the Republican-led Senate.
Crapo’s comments on Wednesday underscore the challenges before the legislation’s supporters. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell discussed potential banking reform with cannabis-industry players in October, but analysts were mixed on what that meant for the bill’s prospects.