Fierce debate has tied up a proposed new emergency stimulus bill aimed at pulling the United States up from a looming nose dive crash.
A version of the bill drafted by Democrats and approved by the House has drawn criticism from Republicans, who claim it contains items unrelated to the current coronavirus-caused crises.
One such provision would allow federally backed financial institutions and insurers to work with legal cannabis companies. Currently, such institutions can receive steep penalties for doing business with federally “controlled substances” such as cannabis, though weed is legal in some form in most states.
The inclusion of cannabis industry protection has drawn the ire of some conservatives. When asked about the controversy during a press briefing, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told reporters, “I don’t agree with you that cannabis is not related to this. This is a therapy that has proven successful.”
Republicans have come up with their own emergency stimulus bill and, unsurprisingly, have drawn the exact same kind of criticism for including language seemingly unrelated to the pandemic and its economic fallout.
One detail which has earned attention is the bill’s proposal to build a brand spanking new FBI building at its current location in Washington, D.C. for the price of $1.8 billion.
Pelosi and others have claimed that the Trump administration has sought to reboot the FBI building since early in the presidential term. The current building is across the street from a Trump hotel and Pelosi alleges that the president wants to keep the hotel’s current location “so that another hotel doesn’t come in there and compete with the president’s hotel,” as reported by The Hill.
“That’s what that’s all about. That has nothing to do with the coronavirus,” she added. “So we’re going to have to come to some compromise on the legislation. I just don’t accept that there’s any equivalence in what you put forth there.”
Photo via Flickr/U.S. Embassy Ghana