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Phew! Booker clarifies his SAFE stance

Senator Cory Booker told Yahoo! Finance’s Zack Guzmán that — seemingly contrary to what he said last week — that he does in fact support the SAFE Banking Act after all.

“Don’t get me wrong, I support the SAFE Banking Act,” he told Guzmán. “I think it’s a phenomenal bill … I support this completely.”

Let’s review

In the past, Booker has been critical of the lack of equity and justice reform aspects of the SAFE Banking Act, which would remove federal restrictions on banking, raising capital and completing consumer transactions. 

But last week’s words at the press conference introducing his Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act were stronger, vowing that he would “do everything” he could to stop the bill that would benefit corporations and not those harmed by the war on drugs.

Feedback floods #MarijuanaJustice on Twitter

After inviting feedback from Americans, many pointed out that SAFE would benefit the many equity licence holders who are already trying to make a go of it in legal states. 

“How can you block #SAFEBanking when SAFE is desperately needed to hurt black markets & be inclusive to minority communities + usher in social justice reforms?” tweeted Jason Spatafora, also known as the Wolf of Weed Street. “SAFE has GOP sponsors and there is an urgent need to protect small business owners being robbed for cash.” 

Reform is coming

Booker addressed Spatafora and others directly, pointing out that his bill would open up banking for everyone — and that he would support SAFE if it included more restorative justice.

“We can both address the pressing need for cannabis businesses to access financial institutions and provide real restorative justice for those harmed by the War on Drugs,” he wrote. “This is not a zero-sum game.”

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