Sponsored by

PuffItUp Dynavap VGoodiez 420EDC
  • Enter our 2nd Annual Design a Sticker Contest here and win an M&M Tech bubbler and a Moodmat!!!
  • Welcome to VaporAsylum! Please take a moment to read our RULES and introduce yourself here.
  • Did you know we have lots of smilies for you to use?
  • Need help navigating the forum? Find out how to use our features here.

Law The Cannabis Chronicals - Misc. Cannabis News

Baron23

Well-Known Member
While it may be part of their platform, and while it may be important to many people including me, I just don't see MJ legalization being that hot button kind of issue that will drive voters one way or the other. On the other hand, my crystal ball is in the shop for repair. LOL

Cannabis Legalization A Key Issue In 2020 US Presidential Election



Cannabis legalization will likely be an important issue for the U.S. presidential election of 2020.
That's according to a research report by Bank of America Securities analysts Bryan Spillane and Lisa Lewandowski.
However, the COVID-19 pandemic could put the debate on hold, they said.
The analysts break down the hypothesis into four elements, which include congressional activity, the Unity task force formed by Democratic candidate Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, cannabis taxation and legalization measures at the state level.
House and Senate Activity
The current economic recession will likely set back talks on cannabis legalization to 2021. The House is showing more activity around these issues, with 48 outstanding bills before various committees as of July 9, against 18 bills in the Senate.
The bills include decriminalization efforts and proposals for expungement of criminal records, among other significant measures.
Options Trade Ideas from Benzinga
In this market, there's never been a better time to profit with options. Get Benzinga Options: Starter Edition to follow Nic Chahine's high-conviction options trades. Click here to subscribe.
The SAFE banking bill, which passed House vote in September 2019 is currently awaiting Senate vote with little progress so far. The analysts, however, expect the inclusion of some form of cannabis banking reform in a COVID-19-related bill.
The Biden-Sanders Task Force
Last week, a Biden-Sanders task force introduced their recommendations to the Democratic National Platform Committee. The Democratic convention will be held in August in Milwaukee.
Sanders and Former Vice President Biden outlined a cannabis policy that remained in line with the measures proposed by the STATES Act, a bill introduced in Congress last year.
The recommendations seek:
  • Democrat support of cannabis decriminalization and the rescheduling of cannabis through executive action on the federal level.
  • Democrat support of legalization for medical cannabis federally.
  • The right for every state to decide on recreational use.
  • Avoidance of federal prosecution for conducts that are legal on the state level.
  • The expungement of cannabis-related criminal convictions.
  • The consideration of substance use disorders as diseases, not crimes, with a focus on the use of drug courts, harm reduction interventions, and treatment diversion programs.
Cannabis Taxes As A Way To Fill Budget Gaps
The analysis includes an idea that has been gaining momentum in recent months: cannabis legalization could inject a much-needed boost into the state’s fiscal shortfalls of 2020.
According to the report, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities estimates that US state budget shortfalls will amount to an approximate of $615 billion from fiscal year 2020 to 2022, and that doesn't include local governments or US territories.
“History suggests that states will cut spending and draw on their rainy day funds, which may ultimately be insufficient. While legal cannabis will not fully fill these budget gaps, it could be part of the solution,” Spillane and Lewandowski wrote.
Governors from New Mexico and Pennsylvania have already voiced opinions in favor of this path, as well as spokespeople from many of the jurisdictions in California that have not yet allowed for legal cannabis. These add up to 70% of the Golden State’s municipalities.
Meanwhile, up to seven states — Arizona, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Oklahoma and South Dakota — are expected to include cannabis reform measures on the 2020 ballot.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
FDA Releases Guidelines On Cannabis Research Following White House Review

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published draft guidance on developing cannabis-based drugs on Tuesday.

This comes weeks after the White House completed its review of the document, clearing its path for public release.

FDA is still in the process of developing regulations that could allow for CBD to be marketed as a food item or dietary supplement, but in the meantime it has worked to create these new research guidelines for drug manufacturing.

Much of the guidance—which is “limited to the development of human drugs and does not cover other FDA-regulated products”—covers the basics of conducting federally authorized research for drug development purposes such as where researchers are allowed to obtain cannabis and the importance of demonstrating the ability to “consistently manufacture a quality product.”

“A range of stakeholders have expressed interest in development of drugs that contain cannabis and compounds found in cannabis. Recent legislative changes have also opened new opportunities for cannabis clinical research,” FDA Principal Deputy Commissioner Amy Abernethy said in a press release. “As that body of research progresses and grows, the FDA is working to support drug development in this area.”

The chief legislative change she referenced is the 2018 Farm Bill, which federally legalized hemp and its derivatives such as CBD.

For researchers, that reform means they are no longer bound to certain restrictions that exist for marijuana. For example, FDA noted in the new document that as long as a manufacturer produces hemp products that meet the federal definition of containing no more than 0.3 percent THC, scientists can use that for studies rather that rely on the nation’s only federally authorized marijuana manufacturer at the University of Mississippi.

“This change gives sponsors and investigators of clinical studies new options that do not involve the [National Institute on Drug Abuse Drug Supply Program],” FDA wrote.


Because excess THC concentrations could render hemp illicit under federal law, FDA dedicated a section to testing standards for hemp-derived products.

“Sponsors and investigators proposing drug development activities involving controlled substances should consult with [Drug Enforcement Administration] about the applicable requirements,” it said. “Sponsors and investigators may find it useful to calculate the level of delta-9 THC in their proposed investigational drug product early in the development process to gain insight into the potential control status of their product.”

“Regardless of whether cannabis or a cannabis-derived compound meets the definition of hemp, sponsors and applicants should work with reliable laboratories for analytical testing,” it continued.

Applicants for an investigational new drug should submit information to FDA that includes “quantitative data, such as a certificate of analysis from a laboratory” on THC content and “detailed descriptions of testing methods used to evaluate the level of delta-9 THC.” They should also provide “quantitative data regarding phytochemicals that are present in their proposed product, including but not limited to, cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.”

“Many sponsors initiating clinical research for drugs containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds may be unclear regarding, or unfamiliar with, applicable drug quality expectations,” FDA said.

The agency discussed how calculating dry weight for hemp is unique in that it should be based on “the calculation of delta-9 THC percentage on the composition of the formulation with the amount of water removed, including any water that may be contained in excipients.” It’s not clear if that standard would prove burdensome for hemp producers, but it is the case that many farmers have already complained about existing stringent THC testing policies under U.S. Department of Agriculture guidance.

The new FDA guidance gives a step-by-step overview of how to test for THC on a dry weight basis in a way that meets their standards.

“We recommend that you consult DEA regarding the control status of cannabis or cannabis-derived materials or products that are under development,” the document states. “We note that intermediates or drug products that contain greater than 0.3 percent delta-9 THC by dry weight, even if the starting materials meet the definition of hemp, may no longer meet the definition of hemp and may be considered a Schedule I controlled substance.”

“We invite comment from the public on this recommended approach,” the agency said in a Federal Register notice accompanying the new draft guidance. “In addition, FDA invites public comment on the appropriate manufacturing controls over materials that cross under the 0.3 percent delta-9 THC by dry weight threshold during the production of a drug that contains cannabis or cannabis derived compounds.”

A 60 day public comment period will be opened for stakeholders to weigh in on the proposed research guidelines. At the same time, the agency has a separate comment period indefinitely open for information on the safety and efficacy of CBD.

FDA stressed that guidance documents such as this one “do not establish legally enforceable responsibilities.”

“Instead,” it said, “guidances describe the Agency’s current thinking on a topic and should be viewed only as recommendations, unless specific regulatory or statutory requirements are cited.”

The agency said researchers should take other non-cannabis-specific past guidance on the development of botanical drugs into account as well and laid out several other considerations.

“Cannabis is held to the same regulatory standards as any other botanical raw material, botanical drug substance, or botanical drug product,” the guidance states. To that end, researchers should be doing things like chemical fingerprinting to ensure consistency and testing for residual pesticides. FDA also noted that any drug products that require a device like an inhaler fall under their own category with its own set of requirements.

Further, researchers should “consider selection of a container closure system carefully.”

The agency also emphasized that “a naturally occurring compound isolated from a botanical source would be expected to have a different impurity profile from the corresponding synthetically produced cannabis related compound, and impurities for the naturally occurring compound should be controlled accordingly” as opposed to “synthetic single-chemical active pharmaceutical ingredients.”

Advocates, industry representatives, regulators, health professionals and marijuana legalization opponents stood up before FDA last year at a historic public hearing to share their perspectives on how to best approach regulating CBD.

“It is critical that the FDA continues to do what we can to support the science needed to develop new drugs from cannabis,” the agency’s Abernethy said. “The FDA believes the drug approval process represents the best way to ensure that safe and effective new medicines, including any drugs that contain cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds, are available to patients in need of appropriate medical therapy.”

“The agency is committed to supporting the development of these new drugs through the investigational new drug, drug review and drug approval processes—and one key element of this support involves development of guidance, like this one,” she said.

FDA also recently submitted a report to Congress on the state of the CBD marketplace, and the document outlines studies the agency has performed on the contents and quality of cannabis-derived products that it has tested over the past six years.

Also this month, a spending bill for FDA was released that includes a provision providing “funding to develop a framework for regulating CBD products.”

Click on title link and scroll to the bottom of the article to read the FDA’s draft guidance on cannabis research.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
House Approves Legislation Allowing CBD Use By Military

Will US servicemembers soon be able to use CBD?

The U.S. House of Representatives approved an amendment to a defense spending bill on Monday that would allow members of the military to use CBD. The amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), from Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, was approved by a vote of 360 to 71 as part of a package of amendments to the House version of the bill.

“The Secretary of Defense may not prohibit, on the basis of a product containing hemp or any ingredient derived from hemp, the possession, use, or consumption of such product by a member of the Armed Forces,” the amendment from Gabbard reads.

The amendment is a response to a Department of Defense policy issued in February by Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Matthew P. Donovan that directed all branches of the military to enact prohibitions on CBD and other hemp products, despite the crop being legalized with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. The memo from Donovan said that CBD use posed “a serious risk to the viability of the military drug testing program,” which is unable to distinguish between THC from hemp and other forms of cannabis.

Because legal hemp and CBD products are permitted to contain up to 0.3% THC, the Department of Defense opted for a complete ban on the products, citing the “risks and adverse effects marijuana use has on the mission for readiness of individual Service members and military units.”

Hemp Industry Calls For Senate Support
If Gabbard’s amendment is included in the final version of the appropriations bill agreed to by the Senate and signed by the president, that ban would be reversed. Jonathan Miller, the general counsel for the trade group U.S. Hemp Roundtable, told High Times that would be welcome news to our women and men in uniform.

“If it becomes law, the amendment will reverse the Department of Defense’s harsh policy that makes the use of hemp products by military service members a crime—a policy that quietly came into effect earlier this year,” Miller said in an email. “The amendment will also invalidate policies by the Army and Air Force that ban the use of hemp products and policies by the Navy and Marine Corps that limit acceptable use to topical products.”

Former service member David Metzler, the CEO of CBD nutraceuticals investment and scaling company CBDCapitalGroup, said that the benefits of cannabidiol are particularly suited for his comrades in arms.

“Every day around 22 veterans commit suicide in America, which is 130% more than the rate of the general population,” he wrote in an email. “As a Navy veteran, I believe that active military members should be able to utilize the many therapeutic benefits of hemp-derived CBD and not have to risk their careers or be penalized to do so.”

“Their only option,” he continued, “is to use opiates and synthetic anti-depression medications to improve their mental and physical health, even though many of these medications have negative side effects for PTSD.”

Metzler also noted that CBD can have a positive impact on the body as well as the mind.

“Many active military members have strenuous daily jobs that put great wear and tear on their bodies and it is our responsibility as an industry to make sure that legislation is passed so that they can use non-addictive, non-opioid anti-inflammatories like CBD to be able to stay healthy and defend our country.”

Miller of the U.S. Hemp Roundtable said that while hemp enjoys bipartisan support in the Senate, the inclusion of Gabbard’s amendment in the final version of the NDAA isn’t certain. He urged those who support a robust hemp industry “to use our online portal to urge your U.S. Senators to pass similar language allowing the use of CBD by U.S. military personnel.”
 

ataxian

In a BLACK HOLE!
House Approves Legislation Allowing CBD Use By Military

Will US servicemembers soon be able to use CBD?

The U.S. House of Representatives approved an amendment to a defense spending bill on Monday that would allow members of the military to use CBD. The amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), from Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, was approved by a vote of 360 to 71 as part of a package of amendments to the House version of the bill.

“The Secretary of Defense may not prohibit, on the basis of a product containing hemp or any ingredient derived from hemp, the possession, use, or consumption of such product by a member of the Armed Forces,” the amendment from Gabbard reads.

The amendment is a response to a Department of Defense policy issued in February by Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Matthew P. Donovan that directed all branches of the military to enact prohibitions on CBD and other hemp products, despite the crop being legalized with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. The memo from Donovan said that CBD use posed “a serious risk to the viability of the military drug testing program,” which is unable to distinguish between THC from hemp and other forms of cannabis.

Because legal hemp and CBD products are permitted to contain up to 0.3% THC, the Department of Defense opted for a complete ban on the products, citing the “risks and adverse effects marijuana use has on the mission for readiness of individual Service members and military units.”

Hemp Industry Calls For Senate Support
If Gabbard’s amendment is included in the final version of the appropriations bill agreed to by the Senate and signed by the president, that ban would be reversed. Jonathan Miller, the general counsel for the trade group U.S. Hemp Roundtable, told High Times that would be welcome news to our women and men in uniform.

“If it becomes law, the amendment will reverse the Department of Defense’s harsh policy that makes the use of hemp products by military service members a crime—a policy that quietly came into effect earlier this year,” Miller said in an email. “The amendment will also invalidate policies by the Army and Air Force that ban the use of hemp products and policies by the Navy and Marine Corps that limit acceptable use to topical products.”

Former service member David Metzler, the CEO of CBD nutraceuticals investment and scaling company CBDCapitalGroup, said that the benefits of cannabidiol are particularly suited for his comrades in arms.

“Every day around 22 veterans commit suicide in America, which is 130% more than the rate of the general population,” he wrote in an email. “As a Navy veteran, I believe that active military members should be able to utilize the many therapeutic benefits of hemp-derived CBD and not have to risk their careers or be penalized to do so.”

“Their only option,” he continued, “is to use opiates and synthetic anti-depression medications to improve their mental and physical health, even though many of these medications have negative side effects for PTSD.”

Metzler also noted that CBD can have a positive impact on the body as well as the mind.

“Many active military members have strenuous daily jobs that put great wear and tear on their bodies and it is our responsibility as an industry to make sure that legislation is passed so that they can use non-addictive, non-opioid anti-inflammatories like CBD to be able to stay healthy and defend our country.”

Miller of the U.S. Hemp Roundtable said that while hemp enjoys bipartisan support in the Senate, the inclusion of Gabbard’s amendment in the final version of the NDAA isn’t certain. He urged those who support a robust hemp industry “to use our online portal to urge your U.S. Senators to pass similar language allowing the use of CBD by U.S. military personnel.”
Many family member’s were in PEARL HARBOR during WW2.
CBD WOULD BE SO HELPFUL TO HUMAN BEING’s in war!
 

CarolKing

Always in search of the perfect vaporizer
Clint Eastwood is taking legal action against a number of CBD companies that he claims have falsely used his name and image to promote their product.
Two lawsuits were filed in Los Angeles on Wednesday, alleging companies have promoted false news articles claiming the Hollywood legend is leaving showbiz to pursue a career in CBD.
Eastwood, 90, has no part in manufacturing, or selling CBD, the suit says.
CLINT EASTWOOD, 90, GRATEFUL FOR HIS LARGE ‘CLOSE’ FAMILY, SAYS INSIDER
CBD is a chemical that comes from marijuana used for several physical ailments, including pain and anxiety, and is often used in diets or ointments. The chemical does not provide the high that THC does.

Clint’s probably a closet cannabis user, doesn’t want to ruin his conservative reputation.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
Congress Planning Vote On Federal Marijuana Legalization Bill In September, Sources Say

Leadership of the House of Representatives is moving toward holding a floor vote on a comprehensive federal cannabis legalization bill in September, multiple sources familiar with the developing plan tell Marijuana Moment.

The Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act—introduced by Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) last year—has already cleared his panel and was referred to several other committees. In the months since, advocates have been eagerly awaiting further action to advance the legislation to the floor.

While the coronavirus pandemic has stalled legislative efforts on a wide range of issues, sources in the advocacy world and an aide to a key House committee chair say that a floor vote of the MORE Act is now being planned for September.

The mechanics of that plan are tricky, as several additional committees would have to either hold their own markups on the bill in the coming weeks amid the pandemic and a planned August recess, or the chairs would have to waive jurisdiction outright, as the Small Business Committee has already indicated it will. The aide to a committee chair who spoke to Marijuana Moment did so on background only in order to be able to candidly discuss plans that haven’t yet been publicly announced by House leaders.

“Looking at the legislative calendar, realistically we have limited time to get this on the House floor for a vote before time runs out and Congress has to turn their attention elsewhere,” Queen Adesuyi, policy manager for the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), told Marijuana Moment.

DPA is also part of a coalition, including the ACLU, Human Rights Watch and NORML, that circulated a letter on Wednesday urging Congress to move on the bill, arguing that the COVID-19 outbreak has underscored the need for reform. The legislation currently has 76 cosponsors.

“This Congress, the House made history when it passed an industry-led marijuana bill,” Adesuyi said, referring to the passage of cannabis banking legislation. “It would be shameful for them, as one of the most progressive group of electeds in recent memory, to end the year without addressing victims of the war on drugs or centering those most adversely impacted by marijuana’s criminalization. We need the MORE Act now.”

In addition to that floor vote on the standalone banking bill last year, the House approved its provisions again as part of a coronavirus relief package in May.

The MORE Act would federally deschedule cannabis, expunge the records of those with prior marijuana convictions and impose a federal five percent tax on sales, revenue from which would be reinvested in communities most impacted by the drug war.

It would also create a pathway for resentencing for those incarcerated for marijuana offenses, as well as protect immigrants from being denied citizenship over cannabis and prevent federal agencies from denying public benefits or security clearances due to its use.

“The Judiciary Committee has already done their job and now it’s time for the full House to show the American people who supports ending marijuana criminalization and who supports the failed and violent policy of prohibition,” Justin Strekal, political director of NORML, told Marijuana Moment.

Don Murphy, director of federal policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, told Marijuana Moment that the group “supports the MORE Act because, platform planks, task force reports and political rhetoric will not stop 600,000 of our citizens from arrest, prosecution and incarceration every year. The MORE Act will.”

“If they hold the gavel and have the votes, there is no reason to wait another term,” he said, referring to Democratic leadership. “For the next 600,000 prisoners of the drug war, it would be a term too late.”

The planned vote on the standalone MORE Act is separate from a spending bill amendment to protect all state marijuana programs from federal intervention that was filed this week and could be considered on the House floor next week.

“It is only a matter of time before cannabis is descheduled at the federal level and the other reforms contained in the MORE Act are enacted,” Steve Fox, a strategic advisor to the Cannabis Trade Federation, told Marijuana Moment . “We are supportive of any committee hearing or vote that moves us closer to our ultimate goals of ending cannabis prohibition, advancing social equity, and regulating cannabis like alcohol under federal law.”

If a vote is scheduled in the House and members approve it, there will still be an open question about whether the Republican-controlled Senate would follow suit. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is a strong advocate for hemp, but he’s maintained steadfast opposition to broader marijuana reform. That said, he did hold closed-door meetings with industry representatives last year.

It’s possible that House action might make Senate leaders feel increased pressure to act on a more modest cannabis reform proposal such as the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act, however. That bill, which is sponsored by Sens. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), would simply allow states to set their own marijuana policies without fear of federal intervention.

Gardner could use that legislative win as he trails behind former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) in his reelection race. What’s more, President Trump has expressed support for the proposal.

One congressional staffer told Marijuana Moment that they’re skeptical House leaders will ultimately pursue a floor vote of the MORE Act so close to the November election, as the presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden remains opposed to adult-use legalization and it could put him on the spot.

Advocates were disappointed after lawmakers declined to include marijuana legalization as part of a recent policing reform bill the House passed. Several legislators made the case that it was an appropriate vehicle for the policy change, as ending cannabis criminalization would minimize police interactions.

Marijuana Moment reached out to the offices of Nadler, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) for comment, but they did not respond by the time of publication.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
I'm not so sure about that....

Marijuana Legalization Excluded From Draft 2020 Democratic Party Platform

The Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) platform drafting panel released an initial version of the party’s formal policy positions this week, and when it comes to marijuana issues, it largely aligns with presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s plan.

The draft platform calls for decriminalizing cannabis possession, automatic expungements of prior marijuana convictions, federal rescheduling through executive action, legalizing medical cannabis and allowing states to set their own laws. Like Biden, it stops short of endorsing adult-use legalization.

The language very closely echoes recommendations released earlier this month by criminal justice reform task force that Biden and former primary rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) organized.

“Democrats will decriminalize marijuana use and reschedule it through executive action on the federal level. We will support legalization of medical marijuana, and believe states should be able to make their own decisions about recreational use. The Justice Department should not launch federal prosecutions of conduct that is legal at the state level. All past criminal convictions for cannabis use should be automatically expunged.”

While the draft proposal currently excludes legalization, there’s still a chance that it could be amended when a full platform committee meets on Monday. According to Politico, some progressive members of the panel are considering introducing amendments to back legalization.

The panel consists of about 180 members, including 25 who have been appointed by the DNC chairman. The rest of the members are selected based on the number of pledged delegates each candidate received. After the committee submits its revised version, it will be submitted for final ratification at the Democratic convention next month.

“Substance use disorders are diseases, not crimes. Democrats believe no one should be in prison solely because they use drugs,” the draft document states. “And rather than involving the criminal justice system, Democrats support increased use of drug courts, harm reduction interventions, and treatment diversion programs for those struggling with substance use disorders.”

The DNC in 2016 similarly adopted a plank asserting that “states should be laboratories of democracy on the issue of marijuana, and those states that want to decriminalize marijuana should be able to do so.”

But it also seemed more open to broader changes, stating that the party supports “reforming our laws to allow legal marijuana businesses to exist without uncertainty.”

The party explicitly stated in the earlier document that there should be a “a reasoned pathway for future legalization.”

This year’s draft platform doesn’t say anything about taking steps to broader cannabis legalization and makes no mention of the marijuana industry.

Beyond cannabis, the drafting committee included a provision that argues it is “past time to end the failed ‘War on Drugs,’ which has imprisoned millions of Americans— disproportionately people of color—and hasn’t been effective in reducing drug use.”

“Democrats support policies that will reorient our public safety approach toward prevention, and away from over-policing—including by making evidence-based investments in jobs, housing, education, and the arts that will make our nation fairer, freer, and more prosperous,” it says.

The platform document also discusses the opioid crisis specifically, which it says “has devastated American communities, and the Trump Administration has completely failed in its response, leaving millions of families desperate for help.”

“Democrats will make medication-assisted treatment available to all who need it, and will require publicly supported health clinics to offer medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction and approved treatments for other substance use disorders,” the plank says. “We believe we must stop over-prescribing while improving access to effective and needed pain management.”

“Democrats recognize that incarcerated people suffer from serious mental health and substance use disorders at higher rates than the general population, which is why we will support expanded access to mental health and substance use disorder care in prisons and for returning citizens. We will ensure no one is incarcerated solely for drug use, and support increased use of drug courts, harm reduction interventions, and treatment diversion programs for those struggling with substance use disorders.”

The platform drafting committee talked about drug policy issues, including the dangers of discrimination against people with substance misuse disorders, during virtual meetings earlier this month.
The final 2016 Democratic platform cannabis plank was the result of debate and compromise between delegates aligned with Sanders, who supports legalizing marijuana, and those representing that year’s presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, who, like Biden, does not.

This year’s full platform committee meeting will take place on Monday at 2:00 PM ET and will be streamed on the 2020 Democratic National Convention’s YouTube channel.

Cook County, Illinois State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx appeared at one meeting and discussed her role in advancing marijuana legalization in Illinois, touting the law’s expungements provision and characterizing the policy change as necessary to right the wrongs of the drug war.

You can read the DNC platform drafting committee proposals on marijuana and other drug policies by following the title link and scrolling to the bottom of the article.
 

CarolKing

Always in search of the perfect vaporizer
Cannabis industry: Suddenly pot legalization seems more likely
Jennifer Bissell-Linsk, Bloomberg NewsPublished 11:29 a.m. ET July 26, 2020 | Updated 11:35 a.m. ET July 26, 2020

The U.S. could legalize marijuana at the federal level as soon as 2021 if Joe Biden is able to win the presidential election and Democrats take control of the Senate.
It’s a dramatic change in expectations from three months ago when it appeared Donald Trump would most likely win re-election, and CIBC analysts had put the odds of meaningful reform at “near-zero” for 2020 and “unlikely” for 2021.
“A fact that has become incredibly obvious from a chaotic 2020 is how quickly things can change,” analysts led by John Zamparo wrote in a note. “We stand by our statement for 2020, but for 2021, well, when the facts change, we change our minds.”
Dispatch manager Duwane Mallett, 25, fills an order of medical marijuana for delivery at Five & Dime cannabis dispensary in Detroit on Mar. 19, 2020. Many people are stocking up on their medical marijuana just like other prescriptions.
B
Dispatch manager Duwane Mallett, 25, fills an order of medical marijuana for delivery at Five & Dime cannabis dispensary in Detroit on Mar. 19, 2020. Many people are stocking up on their medical marijuana just like other prescriptions. (Photo: Robin Buckson, The Detroit News)

With the economic fallout from the coronavirus and social unrest following the murder of George Floyd by police, Biden’s chances of winning the election in a possible Democratic sweep has appeared increasingly likely. The former vice president is less supportive of full-scale legalization than his party. But if the Democrats were to win both the White House and Senate, it could open the door to decriminalization and leave the question of legalization up to states.


Legislation could prove popular under the current climate of economic and social unrest. Regulation that includes provisions for criminal justice reform could gain additional support amid calls for greater anti-racism initiatives. States looking to close budget gaps from the coronavirus are also more likely to consider the tax benefits of creating a newly legalized industry.
During a recent Cowen industry panel, there was broad agreement that social justice measures need to be a part of any legislation package, analysts led by Vivien Azer wrote in a note.

“This likely includes provisions ensuring that minorities get to participate in the legal cannabis business as their communities were hit hardest by the war on drugs,” the analysts said. Legislation could also include expunging criminal cannabis convictions or grants to communities hurt by previous U.S. drug policy.
“Biden will be under pressure from the left wing of the Democratic party to move cannabis forward because of the social justice issues,” Curaleaf Holdings Inc. Chairman Boris Jordan recently told Bloomberg News.
 

bulllee

Well-Known Member
Cannabis industry: Suddenly pot legalization seems more likely
Jennifer Bissell-Linsk, Bloomberg NewsPublished 11:29 a.m. ET July 26, 2020 | Updated 11:35 a.m. ET July 26, 2020

The U.S. could legalize marijuana at the federal level as soon as 2021 if Joe Biden is able to win the presidential election and Democrats take control of the Senate.
It’s a dramatic change in expectations from three months ago when it appeared Donald Trump would most likely win re-election, and CIBC analysts had put the odds of meaningful reform at “near-zero” for 2020 and “unlikely” for 2021.
“A fact that has become incredibly obvious from a chaotic 2020 is how quickly things can change,” analysts led by John Zamparo wrote in a note. “We stand by our statement for 2020, but for 2021, well, when the facts change, we change our minds.”
Dispatch manager Duwane Mallett, 25, fills an order of medical marijuana for delivery at Five & Dime cannabis dispensary in Detroit on Mar. 19, 2020. Many people are stocking up on their medical marijuana just like other prescriptions.
B
Dispatch manager Duwane Mallett, 25, fills an order of medical marijuana for delivery at Five & Dime cannabis dispensary in Detroit on Mar. 19, 2020. Many people are stocking up on their medical marijuana just like other prescriptions. (Photo: Robin Buckson, The Detroit News)

With the economic fallout from the coronavirus and social unrest following the murder of George Floyd by police, Biden’s chances of winning the election in a possible Democratic sweep has appeared increasingly likely. The former vice president is less supportive of full-scale legalization than his party. But if the Democrats were to win both the White House and Senate, it could open the door to decriminalization and leave the question of legalization up to states.


Legislation could prove popular under the current climate of economic and social unrest. Regulation that includes provisions for criminal justice reform could gain additional support amid calls for greater anti-racism initiatives. States looking to close budget gaps from the coronavirus are also more likely to consider the tax benefits of creating a newly legalized industry.
During a recent Cowen industry panel, there was broad agreement that social justice measures need to be a part of any legislation package, analysts led by Vivien Azer wrote in a note.

“This likely includes provisions ensuring that minorities get to participate in the legal cannabis business as their communities were hit hardest by the war on drugs,” the analysts said. Legislation could also include expunging criminal cannabis convictions or grants to communities hurt by previous U.S. drug policy.
“Biden will be under pressure from the left wing of the Democratic party to move cannabis forward because of the social justice issues,” Curaleaf Holdings Inc. Chairman Boris Jordan recently told Bloomberg News.
Wishful thinking. This is all "what might happen" = I don't trust a single one of these mother fuckers or what they promise. Remember "You can keep your doctor" ? Don't trust the lot of them. Marijuana legalization shouldn't be the only criteria when voting, but it should at least be on your platform. Ever wonder why the dems won't put legalization on their platform ? JAJAJA. We won't get fooled again. :rofl:
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
More wishful and speculative writing.


'How quickly things can change': U.S. cannabis legalization suddenly seems more likely


Legalization at the federal level could come as soon as 2021 if Joe Biden wins the election and Democrats take control of the Senate
The U.S. could legalize marijuana at the federal level as soon as 2021 if Joe Biden is able to win the presidential election and Democrats take control of the Senate.
It’s a dramatic change in expectations from three months ago when it appeared Donald Trump would most likely win re-election, and CIBC analysts had put the odds of meaningful reform at “near-zero” for 2020 and “unlikely” for 2021.
“A fact that has become incredibly obvious from a chaotic 2020 is how quickly things can change,” analysts led by John Zamparo wrote in a note. “We stand by our statement for 2020, but for 2021, well, when the facts change, we change our minds.”
With the economic fallout from the coronavirus and social unrest following the murder of George Floyd by police, Biden’s chances of winning the election in a possible Democratic sweep has appeared increasingly likely. The former vice president is less supportive of full-scale legalization than his party. But if the Democrats were to win both the White House and Senate, it could open the door to decriminalization and leave the question of legalization up to states.
Legislation could prove popular under the current climate of economic and social unrest. Regulation that includes provisions for criminal justice reform could gain additional support amid calls for greater anti-racism initiatives. States looking to close budget gaps from the coronavirus are also more likely to consider the tax benefits of creating a newly legalized industry.
During a recent Cowen industry panel, there was broad agreement that social justice measures need to be a part of any legislation package, analysts led by Vivien Azer wrote in a note.
“This likely includes provisions ensuring that minorities get to participate in the legal cannabis business as their communities were hit hardest by the war on drugs,” the analysts said. Legislation could also include expunging criminal cannabis convictions or grants to communities hurt by previous U.S. drug policy.
“Biden will be under pressure from the left wing of the Democratic party to move cannabis forward because of the social justice issues,” Curaleaf Holdings Inc. Chairman Boris Jordan recently told Bloomberg News.
There had been some disappointment after a Biden Unity task force didn’t embrace the same cannabis policy proposals from Bernie Sanders’s campaign. Most importantly, it left out full deschedulization, opting instead to make marijuana a schedule 2 drug rather than a schedule 1.
However, Cowen wrote that could be simply a first step. The platform still represents the most aggressive yet from a Democratic nominee.
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
7 States May Be Voting on Marijuana in November


Despite it being a crazy year, Americans can't lose sight of the fact that Election Day is a little over three months away. At stake are 435 seats in the House of Representatives, roughly a third of all seats in the Senate, and, of course, the Oval Office.
But it's an equally important election at the state level. No matter what happens federally, it's unlikely that marijuana's scheduling will be changed anytime soon. This means state-level cannabis legalizations will continue to play a major role in growing the U.S. pot industry.
This coming November, residents of three states are guaranteed to be voting on a cannabis measure in their respective states. However, four additional states may join.
An up-close view of a flowering cannabis plant growing in a commercial cultivation farm.

New Jersey: Will be on the ballot
While there's no such thing as a lock when it comes to voting on the legalization of marijuana, New Jersey's constitutional amendment that aims to legalize adult-use marijuana appears to have a very good chance at passing. According to an April survey from Monmouth University, 61% of New Jerseyans would be in favor of a statewide legalization of cannabis.
If approved, New Jersey would likely be on its way to approaching $1 billion in annual sales by the midpoint of this decade. Curaleaf Holdings (OTC:CURL.F), which leads all U.S. multistate operators in terms of total operating dispensaries (57), would certainly welcome this legalization. Curaleaf already has a presence in the Garden State's medical marijuana industry, and it would likely be able to pivot its existing infrastructure to take advantage of adult-use weed sales within the state.
A row of partitioned voting booths with attached pamphlets.

Mississippi: Will be on the ballot
Rub your eyes all you want -- that really does say Mississippi. Traditionally, highly conservative states have shunned the idea of legalizing cannabis in any capacity. However, national support for medical marijuana is (pardon the pun) especially high. If cannabis proponents have their way, Initiative 65 or Initiative 65A will be approved come November.
Under Initiative 65, medical marijuana would be approved for patients who have one of more than 20 specified qualifying conditions. But under Initiative 65A, the smoking of medical cannabis would be restricted to terminally ill patients and require a lot of increased oversight. Voters will first choose whether they're for or against the legalization of medical marijuana, then decide whether they prefer 65 or 65A, assuming those in favor of legalization have more votes.
A man holding a lit cannabis joint by the tips of his fingers.

South Dakota: Will be on the ballot
Of all the states to make marijuana history in 2020, who placed their bet on South Dakota? The Mount Rushmore State is set to become the first to have its residents vote on medical marijuana and recreational marijuana on the same ballot. Currently, cannabis is entirely illicit in South Dakota.



Measure 26 is a medical cannabis initiative that'll allow voters to decide whether or not a medical pot program should be established in the state for individuals with a debilitating medical condition. Meanwhile, Constitutional Amendment A would legalize the recreational use of weed in the state and require the South Dakota State Legislature to develop medical marijuana and hemp sale regulations prior to April 1, 2022.
As a somewhat conservative state, going from entirely illicit to pedal-to-the-metal legal may not happen. But Measure 26 looks to have a real shot at passage, in my view.
A black silhouette outline of the U.S., partially filled in by baggies of cannabis, rolled joints, and a scale.

Arizona: Signatures submitted
Aside from New Jersey, the only other state with a good shot at legalizing recreational marijuana is Arizona. Residents of the Grand Canyon State have submitted signatures for the Smart and Safe Arizona Act, which would legalize adult-use cannabis and apply a 16% tax on marijuana sales. Most of the revenue raised from legal pot sales would go to fund community colleges, police and fire departments, and into the state's highway user revenue fund.
If approved, Arizona would have a very good case to reach $1 billion in annual weed sales by mid-decade. That would be news to Harvest Health & Recreation's (OTC:HRVS.F) ears. Harvest Health got a bit too giddy with its expansion aspirations and has been shedding noncore assets to reduce its outlays. However, Harvest Health has the largest presence in Arizona of any multistate operator. That makes a prospective ballot initiative for November particularly important for its future.
A judge's gavel next to a handful of dried cannabis buds.

Montana: Signatures submitted
Montana is also looking to wave the green flag on recreational marijuana, yet support for such a measure is far from a lock in a historically conservative state.
Montana's Initiative 190 would legalize recreational consumption and apply a tax of 20% on nonmedical weed sales. It would also allow persons previously convicted of a cannabis offense, or those serving a sentence, to apply for resentencing or expungement. Thus far, signatures for I-190 have been gathered, vetted, and submitted to Montana's Secretary of State.
Back in March 2019, an online Big Sky poll found that 51% of respondents favored the idea of legalizing marijuana in Montana, compared to 37% who opposed the idea. However, the survey had a margin of error of +/- 5.72%, and seniors were clearly not on board with the idea. Montana could surprise folks come November, but it'll definitely be an uphill battle for I-190 proponents.
A tipped over bottle with a handful of cannabis buds inside lying atop a doctor's prescription pad.

Nebraska: Signatures submitted
Of the 50 U.S. states, there's arguably none that's been more historically anti-cannabis than the Cornhusker State. Whereas virtually every state had some sort of medical cannabis or cannabis oil (including CBD) policy on its books as of 2019, Nebraska was the only one that did not. That may change in November.
On July 2, more than 182,000 unverified signatures were submitted to Nebraska's Secretary of State in an effort to get a medical marijuana constitutional amendment on the November ballot. The measure would allow adults (and children with permission of a parent or legal guardian) to use, possess, and purchase marijuana for serious medical conditions. It would fall on the Nebraska Legislature to develop rules and regulations for an in-state medical pot program.
According to a recent poll from McLaughlin and Associates, 76% of prospecting Nebraskan voters were in favor of legalizing medical marijuana.
A smoldering cannabis bud that's beginning to turn black.

Oklahoma: Pending official review
Last, but not least, residents of Oklahoma may be voting on recreational marijuana legalization measure come November. There are quite a few constitutional amendments pending official review in Oklahoma, which, given that there are only a little over three months left before Election Day, doesn't guarantee that any of these cannabis initiatives will reach voters.
For example, Question 807 would impose a 15% excise tax on nonmedical cannabis sales, with localities, schools, and substance abuse programs netting the bulk of the revenue raised. It would also allow for the expungement or redesignation of previous or existing sentences tied to marijuana.
Even if a measure or two does make the ballot, Oklahomans are no lock to approve it. An informal poll from News 9 in August 2019 found that 59% of Oklahoma voters would oppose the recreational legalization of cannabis.
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
Marijuana Legalization May Not Be A Blue Issue Be A Blue Issue


In November of 2019, a Pew Research study revealed that 9 out of 10 Americans favor legalization of either medical or recreational/adult-use marijuana. As a political issue, the study found that a majority of Republicans – 55% - and a majority of Democrats – 78% - were in favor of legalization. American voters no longer believe marijuana should remain a criminalized, Schedule I substance. This is not shocking. The people have spoken, the money is flowing, and the globe keeps on spinning.
Will marijuana policy emerge as a red or blue issue?
As his 2020 presidential campaign rolled out, former Vice President Joe Biden took the position that marijuana should be decriminalized, but not legalized. He justified his position by citing the debunked “gateway drug theory,” which even the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has acknowledged lacks scientific merit.
The task force further indicates that the federal government will not prosecute state-related marijuana crimes, and would view marijuana violations as something to be addressed with drug treatment rather than incarceration.



The task force also recommended not launching federal prosecution for legal matters at the state level - an obvious reference to Attorney General William Barr, accused of inappropriately using Justice Department funds to target the legal cannabis industry. Whether or not Barr abused his power remains to be seen.



Despite the overwhelming support of voters, the Biden-Sanders task force recommendations stop short of marijuana legalization. Why? Isn’t this a blue issue? Not so fast.
It's been said that marijuana legalization is the “superweapon” that Biden refuses to use. The mere fact that Biden refuses to use this ‘superweapon’ is indicative of Democratic policy, which has consistently favored the pharmaceutical industry and regulatory policy lane. This was Hillary Clinton’s position, equal to the rescheduling of cannabis to a Schedule II substance. This overall conservative approach to marijuana by the Democrats in the upcoming election is strategic - lay low and don’t say anything controversial.
Can the Democrats win an election based simply on the perceived disdain toward Trump, rather than having excitement and support for their own candidate? Are the Dems trying not to lose, rather than trying to win, playing it safe rather than setting forth an agenda - a hollow jack and the winner take the hand. The task force’s position on marijuana indicates that they see the issue as a distraction, one that could cause voters to abstain or switch party lines.
It’s unfortunate to watch the Democrats not see the opportunity for social progress by using cannabis as a vehicle for change. Legalizing marijuana is about undoing a century of racist drug policy that disproportionately targets Black and Latino communities — an issue ripe for the Democrats to own. Not to mention job creation. What does the country need right now in the face of a COVID-induced economic crisis? Jobs.
Perhaps Biden doesn’t want to be called a hypocrite. He did advance policy which included strict enforcement for drug crimes and mandatory minimum sentences, all of which disproportionately affected minorities. Again, 55% of Republicans support legalization. The days of Jeff Sessions’s prohibitionist policy are over. The native son just lost the Alabama primary.
A new breed of young Republicans have supported this issue. Whether that’s Cory Gardner in Colorado and his support of the States Act, or former California representative, Dana Rohrabacher, an Orange County Republican so in favor that he enacted the spending legislation with Democrat Sam Farr - the Rohrabacher Farr Amendment - to prohibit federal interference to state marijuana programs.
For Republicans, marijuana legalization is big business. At the end of the day, this is now an essentially designated business responsible for creating at least 250,000 new jobs across the country. All the core conservative platform issues are present: personal freedoms, liberty, and states’ rights. While our current President is a wildcard on this issue, and most others, these principals align with the GOP.
The legalization and commercialization of marijuana has taken the world by storm. Dozens upon dozens of countries are enacting marijuana legalization and commercialization reforms - some specifically because of the economic potential of the cannabis industry to combat a COVID-exacerbated recession.
A proactive candidate would recognize these issues. But here we are in America - skyrocketing cases of the virus, a mobilizing social movement for racial equality, and facing one of the deepest political divides in our nation’s history.
All the while, the marijuana issue just sits there, waiting to be seized. Since Joe looks to let it lie, perhaps the opportunity rests with the Republicans.
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
Congressional Cannabis Caucus Leader Votes Against Legalization Plank For Democratic Platform

A congresswoman widely known as a strong advocate for federal marijuana reform helped defeat an amendment that would have added a cannabis legalization plank to the Democratic party’s 2020 platform.

During a Democratic National Committee platform committee meeting on Monday, Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) was among the 106 delegates who voted against the measure, preserving a more modest reform agenda that more closely aligns with that proposed by presumptive presidential nominee Joe Biden.

Other notable “no” votes came from former Obama staffers and cabinet officials and the mayors of Atlanta and Boston.

But the Lee vote stands out. The congresswoman is a cochair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, the sponsor of a comprehensive legalization bill and a consistent critic of the war on drugs. Just last month, she led a “Dear Colleagues” letter calling on members to pursue legalization as part of police reform legislation.

Lee told Marijuana Moment that she supports a drug policy plan rolled out by a criminal justice task force organized by Biden and former primary rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)that stops short of proposing adult-use cannabis legalization. However, she emphasized that “I fully intend to continue working with a future Biden Administration to move cannabis legalization forward.”


Asked to respond to Lee’s platform vote, fellow Cannabis Caucus co-chair Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) pointed out to that “Americans overwhelmingly support legalizing cannabis.”

“And as our party works to address racial injustices, ending the failed war on drugs must be front and center,” he told Marijuana Moment. “Despite this missed opportunity, we’ll continue our work in Congress and the states to end this senseless prohibition.”

Given the congresswoman’s decidedly pro-reform record—and in light of the supermajority support for legalization among Democrats—there’s a lingering suspicion that the reason behind the amendment’s sound defeat by party insiders has more to do with Biden’s campaign than it does with the actual views of individual members.

The former vice president has maintained an opposition to adult-use legalization. Instead, he’s drawn the line at decriminalizing possession, modest federal rescheduling, medical cannabis legalization, expungements and letting states set their own marijuana policies.

That’s consistent with both the recommendations of the Biden-Sanders criminal justice task force and the language of the platform that the DNC committee ultimately approved. Had members bucked the status quo and amended the platform to support legalization, that could have created tension between the party apparatus and its presumptive nominee.

“Sadly, Lee’s platform vote suggests that politics still plays a role in drug policy, just as it did in the 70’s,” Don Murphy, director of federal policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, told Marijuana Moment. “Luckily, it’s her good vote in Congress that matters most. But it begs the question, do party platforms matter? And after 50 years of the drug war, can’t we finally stop playing politics with 600,000 lives annually?”

The DNC amendment was rejected in a 106-50 vote. Former Obama White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, former White House Domestic Policy Council Director Cecilia Munoz, U.S. Virgin Islands Del. Stacey Plaskett (D), Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms (D) and Boston Mayor Martin Walsh (D) were among those joining Lee in voting against it.

Among the notable “yes” votes were Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D), California Secretary of State Alex Padilla (D), former Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, former Missouri Secretary of State and Senate candidate Jason Kander (D) and columnist and activist Jim Hightower. American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten abstained.
 

Baron23

Well-Known Member
A congresswoman widely known as a strong advocate for federal marijuana reform helped defeat an amendment that would have added a cannabis legalization plank to the Democratic party’s 2020 platform.
Say the fuck what???

Lee told Marijuana Moment that she supports a drug policy plan rolled out by a criminal justice task force organized by Biden and former primary rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)that stops short of proposing adult-use cannabis legalization. However, she emphasized that “I fully intend to continue working with a future Biden Administration to move cannabis legalization forward.”
And yes, Ladies and Gentlemen, yet another example that, for our professional political class, politics trumps principle and doing the right thing for your constituents.

Once again we get to see what our politicians are really motivated to do....gain and keep power no matter how much body english they have to put on their prior stated positions or how many sides of their mouth they have to talk out of to do it.

Personally, I would not let any one of them in my house.

House Votes To Protect State Cannabis Laws


The House voted to approve Part B Amendment #87 Thursday evening, which is a provision to prevent the federal government from using any funds to interfere with state medical or adult-use programs or target individuals and businesses that are in compliance with state cannabis laws. The bipartisan amendment to the Commerce, Justice, and Science appropriations bill was introduced by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Tom McClintock (R-CA), and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC).
“The existing policy of prohibition is an abject failure,” said Rep. Blumenhauer, adding that criminalization disproportionately impacts communities of color and has driven mass protests against police violence. “This selective enforcement of nonsensical policy has posed huge problems for black Americans.”

The amendment passed in a voice vote on Thursday and was then followed by the House of Representatives roll call vote of 254-163. Six Democrats declined to vote in favor while 31 Republicans did vote in favor. The same amendment was passed by the House last year but it did not end up in the final budget bill. Since 2014, Congress has approved has continually approved such language. However, another representative began offering other amendments that would have taken federal money from states that legalized cannabis.

“Today’s House vote aligns with the overwhelming majority of Americans who oppose federal interference with the successful cannabis programs operating throughout the country,” said Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. “Now, it’s time for the Senate to do the right thing and ensure this sensible provision makes it into the final budget legislation so that states can continue to forge their own path on marijuana policy without federal intrusion.”

The legislation though needs to be approved by the Senate. Last year, similar language was stripped out, which the President signed. So far the Senate has not begun reviewing appropriation bills for the 2021 fiscal year.

“Passage of this amendment would give state-legal and essential cannabis businesses some temporary peace of mind while Congress works to permanently end federal prohibition and repair the damage it has done to marginalized communities,” continued Smith. “It is clear that there is strong bipartisan support for cannabis policy reform and we will continue working with lawmakers to promote further legislation in this session.”
 

momofthegoons

Vapor Accessory Addict
Staff member
Senator Files New Bill To Federally Legalize Marijuana And Regulate It Like Tobacco

A Democratic senator filed a new bill to federally legalize marijuana on Thursday, creating yet another potential avenue through which Congress could enact the policy change.

This piece of legislation, sponsored by Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN), would remove cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act and direct several federal agencies to develop regulations for the plant.

Titled the “Substance Regulation and Safety Act,” the bill would deschedule cannabis, require the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop rules that treat marijuana the same as tobacco, create a national research institute to evaluate the risks and benefits of cannabis, require the U.S. Department of Agriculture to impose quality control standards and mandate that the Department of Transportation study methods for detecting THC-impaired driving.

The descheduling provisions “are retroactive and shall apply to any offense committed, case pending, or conviction entered, and, in the case of a juvenile, any offense committed, case pending, or adjudication of juvenile delinquency entered, before, on, or after the date of the enactment of this Act,” the text of the bill states.

HHS would have to come up with a “national strategy to prevent youth use and abuse of cannabis, with specific attention to youth vaping of cannabis products.” Further, text of the legislation states that the department would be required to “regulate cannabis products in the same manner, and to the same extent,” as it does with tobacco.

That includes “applying all labeling and advertising requirements that apply to tobacco products under such Act to cannabis products.”

U.S. Customs and Border Protection would be tasked with working with other agencies to develop policies on allowing marijuana imports and exports.

The legislation further contains racial justice provisions. For example, HHS would have to consult with “consult with civil rights stakeholders” to determine “whether cannabis abuse prevention strategies and policies are likely to have racially disparate impacts” within 100 days of the bill’s enactment.

The Department of Transportation would similarly have to determine whether its impaired driving prevention policy “is likely to contribute to racially disparate impacts in the enforcement of traffic safety laws.”

Agencies charged with establishing these regulations would have one year following the bill’s enactment to finalize those rules.

A federal age requirement for marijuana sales would be set at 21 under the measure.

The short title of the bill as published on Congress’s website states that it would “decriminalize and reschedule cannabis.” However, the text of the legislation as introduced that was shared with Marijuana Moment says it would go beyond rescheduling by removing marijuana from the CSA entirely, a process known as descheduling. Representatives from Smith’s office did not immediately respond to a request for clarification.

This is the latest legalization bill to be introduced this Congress. In some ways, it appears to be a more modest reform compared to other pieces of legislation that reform advocates are backing such as the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment, and Expungement (MORE) Act, which includes provisions beyond rescheduling to reinvest in communities most impacted by the war on drugs.

Sources recently told Marijuana Moment there are plans in motion to get a House floor vote on that bill in September, though it’s prospects in the Republican-controlled Senate are more dubious. It’s possible that this bill from Smith would be more palatable to GOP members given its more narrow focus.

“It’s terrific to see Senator Smith engage so substantively in the cannabis policy reform debate,” Justin Strekal, political director of NORML, told Marijuana Moment. “We at NORML look forward to propelling many aspects of the new legislation into the broader conversation on the future of federal regulations in regards to a post-prohibition America.”

The introduction of this legislation comes one day after the House approved a spending bill amendment that would protect all state, territory and tribal cannabis programs from federal intervention.

While Smith has only been in Congress since 2018, after she replaced Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) following his resignation, she has signed onto various pieces of cannabis reform legislation as a cosponsor, and she’s made several comments in favor of reform.

For example, the senator attached her name to bills to protect banks that service state-legal marijuana businesses from being penalized from federal regulators and to legalize industrial hemp. She also cosponsored a resolution condemning “state-sanctioned extrajudicial killings” over drug crimes in the Philippines.

Smith also recently remarked racial disparities in drug enforcement in a Senate floor speech.

This bill is being introduced as Minnesota lawmakers push for state-level legalization, with a top legislator unveiling a comprehensive plan for legalizing cannabis for all adults 21 and older in May.

It also comes shortly after the Democratic National Committee rejected an amendment to adopt legalization as a 2020 party plank, with members opting instead to embrace more modest reforms. Advocates suspend that there may have been pressure for the panel not to formally embrace a policy change that is opposed to by presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

Read the new Senate marijuana legalization bill by clicking link in title and scrolling to the bottom of the article.
 

Sponsored by

PuffItUp Dynavap VGoodiez 420EDC
Top