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Biden says cannabis rules could change after Richardson ban (Newsletter: July 5, 2021)

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FDA’s CBD warning for dogs; RI safe consumption bill to gov; House witness: Lawmakers should visit marijuana biz together

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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW

President Joe Biden suggested that anti-marijuana rules for athletes could change following the runner Sha’Carri Richardson’s suspension from Olympic competition due to a positive cannabis test. The comments came one day after White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki declined to condemn the sanction against Richardson and as a bipartisan group of lawmakers called on sports officials to reconsider their approach to the issue.

Ahead of the 4th of July, the Food and Drug Administration warned people about using CBD to calm dogs that are scared of fireworks because it “has NOT evaluated these products.” But in doing so for the third year in a row, the agency inadvertently revealed that it’s not doing its job.

Rhode Island lawmakers sent a bill to Gov. Dan McKee (D) that would make the state the first to legalize safe consumption sites for illegal drugs.

A witness at a House hearing testified that members of Congress can get to know one another and reduce partisan bickering by visiting marijuana businesses together.

  • “It’s a little cheesy. But actually, because it’s one-on-one, it’s harder to be really demeaning.”

Sens. Alex Padilla (D-CA), Mark Warner (D-VA) and Tim Kaine (D-VA) are calling on the Department of Homeland Security to reopen the case of a Navy veteran who was deported over a marijuana conviction.

/ FEDERAL

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) criticized both major parties for not embracing marijuana legalization.

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) tweeted, “The War on Drugs has gone on long enough. It has destroyed communities, devastated families and hasn’t put a dent in drug use. It’s time to end the punitive War on Drugs and take a health-based approach.”

Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) tweeted, “Today, after decades of excessive incarceration that disproportionately targeted communities of color, marijuana is legalized in the Commonwealth of Virginia. I have called for this step for years, and will continue to support and vote for legalization at the federal level.”

Rep. Ed Permutter (D-CO) tweeted, “States’ rights and the will of the majority of voters in this country need to be respected as we look to reform federal cannabis laws. I continue to push for passage of the #SAFEBankingAct to align state and federal law and reduce the public safety risk in our communities.”

Former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) tweeted, “Those who have power to make laws and rules about marijuana have damaged/destroyed countless lives due to their ignorance and lack of aloha. OC: Drop rule and end Sha’Carri’s suspension. Live aloha.”

The House bill to decriminalize all drugs got four new cosponsors for a total of 16.

The House bill to deschedule marijuana and fund programs to repair the harms of the drug war got 47 new cosponsors for a total of 52.

/ STATES

Maine Gov. Janet Mills (D) allowed a bill to require regulators to consult the public on changes to medical cannabis rules to become law without her signature.

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried, currently the state’s agriculture commissioner, tweeted, “Suspended from the @Olympics for a medicine legal in her state that doesn’t affect her performance and eased the grief of losing her mother? Enough of this. Let Sha’Carri run.”

California lawmakers sent Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) a bill to consolidate marijuana regulatory bodies and make other changes to rules.

Puerto Rico’s Senate approved a bill on workplace protections for medical cannabis patients.

Rhode Island House leaders said they “intend to continue working on legislation concerning cannabis regulation.”

Virginia’s Senate president pro tempore is a co-owner of a CBD store.

The New Jersey Supreme Court issued an order to facilitate the dismissal, vacating and expungement of marijuana cases.

A Florida appeals court ruled that an employer doesn’t have to pay for a worker’s visit to a physician to be evaluated for a medical cannabis recommendation.

A Tennessee representative said the state is “nowhere close” to legalizing marijuana.

Oregon regulators published guidance about the end of coronavirus-related restrictions for marijuana businesses.

Connecticut officials are accepting applications to serve on the new cannabis Social Equity Council.

South Dakota regulators plan to select a vendor to run the state’s medical cannabis system by the end of next month.


Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,100 cannabis, psychedelics and drug policy bills in state legislatures and Congress this year. Patreon supporters pledging at least $25/month get access to our interactive maps, charts and hearing calendar so they don’t miss any developments.

Learn more about our marijuana bill tracker and become a supporter on Patreon to get access.

/ LOCAL

South Dakota cities and counties are working to enact medical cannabis rules.

/ INTERNATIONAL

Argentina’s Senate advanced a medical cannabis bill.

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority outlined a proposed approach to assessing and listing applications for companies with cannabis-related activities.

Paraguay’s minister of health participated in a press event to accept cannabis-based medicines on behalf of patients.

/ SCIENCE & HEALTH

A study found that “more than 60% of the patients with [multiple sclerosis] who started add-on treatment with cannabinoid oromucosal spray reported a clinically relevant symptomatic effect and continued treatment after 12 weeks.”

/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS

The Wyoming Democratic Party tweeted, “The Wyoming Democratic Party supports the legalization of marijuana. (We know this makes Susan Gore a little unhappy.)”

Donald Trump Jr. tweeted, “WTF??? You’re telling me weed is somehow ‘performance enhancing’ but being born and living most of your life as a dude and then competing against women isn’t? Total bullshit!!! The woke olympics sucks! Let her compete, I’m pretty damn sure weed has never made anyone faster.” He also tweeted, “If they’re changing the rules to allow biological men to compete against women and that biology I.e. bone structure/density, lung capacity, muscle density etc… is not somehow an advantage or “performance enhancing” maybe it’s time they look at the policy on marijuana? Its time.”

/ BUSINESS

Nike issued a statement standing by Sha’Carri Richardson following her marijuana-related suspension.

Columbia Care Inc. completed its acquisition of CannAscend.

Cura Partners and Arcadian Capital LLC reached a settlement in a lawsuit over an unpaid finder’s fee related to the former company’s acquisition by Curaleaf.

The Parent Company terminated an agreement to invest $50 million in GH Group, Inc.

The Hawthorne Gardening Company announced a five-year exclusive partnership between its Max-Fan brand and Ruck Ventilatoren GmbH.

/ CULTURE

Football player Patrick Mahomes said Sha’Carri Richardson’s suspension for marijuana is “trash.”

Seth Rogen tweeted, “The notion that weed is a problematic ‘drug’ is rooted in racism. It’s insane that Team USA would disqualify one of this country’s most talented athletes over thinking that’s rooted in hatred. It’s something they should be ashamed of. Also if weed made you fast, I’d be FloJo.”

The Onion also weighed in on Richardson’s cannabis suspension.

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Tom Angell is the editor of Marijuana Moment. A 20-year veteran in the cannabis law reform movement, he covers the policy and politics of marijuana. Separately, he founded the nonprofit Marijuana Majority. Previously he reported for Marijuana.com and MassRoots, and handled media relations and campaigns for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.

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